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Full text of "Knight Letter No. 76"

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KNIGHT UTTER 






The Lewis Carroll Society of North America 




spring 2006 



Volume II Issue 6 



Number 76 



Knight Letter is the official magazine of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America. 

It is published twice a year and is distributed free to all members. 

Subscriptions, business correspondence, and inquiries should be addressed 

to the Secretary, PO Box 204. Napa CA 94559. 

Annual membership dues are U.S. $25 (regular) and $50 (sustaining). 

Submissions and editorial correspondence should be sent to 

the Editor, preferably by email (wrabbit@worldpassage.net) , 

or mailed to 1251 San Antonio Rd., Petaluma, CA 94952. 

ISSN 0193-886X 




Mark Burstein, Editor in Chief 

Sarah Adams, Matthew Demakos, Associate Editors 

Andrew H. Ogus, Designer 



The Lewis Carroll Society of North America 

President: 
Alan Tannenbaum, tannenbaum@mindspring.com 

Vice-President: 
Mark Burstein, wrabbit@worldpassage.net 

Secretary: 
Cindy Watter, hedgehogccw@sbcglobal.net 




www.LewisCarroll.org 



On the Front Cover: 
Mary Kline-Misol 

Hatter, 1998 

Acrylic on canvas 

60" X 50" 

seep. 7 



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CONTENTS 






THe ReCTORY UMBRBLLA 

J^ 

A Gardner's Nosegay: Further Annotations 
Martin Gardner 

1 

You Really Ought to Give Iowa a Try 
Mark Burstein 



Folklore and Mythology in the Alice Books 
Frederick C. Lake 



Aboard the Trojan Horse 
Mark Burstein 

13 

Evolution of a Dream-Child: Images of Alice 

and Changing Conceptions of Childhood 

Parts I and II 

Victoria Sears 

19 



MISCHMASCH 



LGAVeS FROM THG DGANGRY GARDSN 
24 

RAVINGS 
26 

SGRGNDIPITY 

28 

Another Contemporary Sylvie and Bruno Review 
Clare Imholtz 

29 



An Archetype of Transformation 
Jenifer Ransom 

30 

CARROLLIAN NOTGS 

33 

Sic, Sic, Sic 

The Rath of Grapes 

Dodo Dada 

Of Sex and Queens 

Serendipity Do 
Andrew Sellon 

Deliva Falletta 

Dodgson on Holiday 
Clare Imholtz 

Take the Kids 



OF BOOKS AND THINGS 

37 

Alice and the Dean 

Leave This Stone Unturned 
Andrew Ogus 

Mystery Solved 

Reduxio ad Absurdum 
Sarah Adams 

Ten for Ten(niel) 
Sarah Adams 

Alice, Where Art Thou? 
Clare Imholtz 

FROM OUR FAR-FLUNG 
CORRGSPONDGNTS 

40 

Books — A r ticks — Cyberspace 

Conferences and Lectures — Exhibitions 

Performances — A uctions 

Media — Things 




First, apologies for a "late" delivery (characteristic of a certain pigment- 
impaired lagomorph). This edition contains the first instance of reporting 
two meetings in one issue; we felt this was a better solution than to have 
another long delay before you could read about our recent Southern Cali- 
fornia confabulation. 

Speaking of deliveries, it's been a bit hectic here since the arrival of 
the newest member of our cult, Sonja Eames Burstein, born on April 7. I 
tried to name her Alice, Lily, Dinah, Kitty, Rose, Ada, Mabel, Isa, Xie, Louisa, 
or Carol or something somehow related, but my beloved wife Llisa wasn't 
crazy about the idea. She herself came up with "Sonja" and imagine our 
surprise when, after hearing the news, Mariah Isakova revealed to me that 
Sonja (cohh) was, in fact, the Russian word for "dormouse"! Even later, I re- 
membered that CoH^ 6 cmpane duea {Sonja in the Land of Miracles) was the first 
Russian translation of Wonderland (in 1879). Curious how that worked out. 

In this issue we welcome back Martin Gardner, who has bestowed upon 
us some further annotations; the long-awaited paper on folklore and my- 
thology by Rick Lake (delivered to our society at our Spring 2004 meeting) ; 
Jenifer Ransom's views on mushrooms; and the first part of a series on the 
evolving image of Alice by Victoria Sears. 

Gotta run. Sonja is sneezing, and I don't want her to turn into a pig. 

Mark Burstein 




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MARTIN GARDNER 






T/j^ eternally productive Martin Gardner, in between edit- 
ing a ''heavily revised" edition of The New Ambidextrous 
Universe: Symmetry and Asymmetry, from Mirror 
Reflections to Superstrings (which contains many Car- 
rollian references in regard to mirror reflections) and assem- 
bling a collection of essays on G. K. Chesterton, among other 
projects, still finds time to keep up with the latest in Carrol- 
Han scholarship. In KL 75, he added nearly thirty annota- 
tions; here are his latest contributions. 

New Notes and Corrections 

The page numbers are for "The Definitive Edition" 
of The Annotated Alice (Norton, 2000). Pagination is 
different in the Penguin British edition. 

14. Add note 5a: 

Brian Sibley noticed that in Tenniel's picture 
(p. 22) of the White Rabbit trotting down the 
hall, no lamps are hanging from the ceiling. 

15. Add a ^^^ at the end of the top paragraph. 

23. Add to note 4: 

See also "Alice in Mathematics," by Kenneth D. 
Salins, in The Carrollian (Spring 2000). 

28. Add to note 10: 



See Brian Sibley's delightful essay "Mr. Dodgson 
and the Dodo," \n Jabberxuocky (Spring 1974). 
He quotes Will Cuppy, "The Dodo never had a 
chance. He seems to have been invented for the 
sole purpose of becoming extinct and that was 
all he was good for." 

36. Insert the following between the two paragraphs 
of Note 4: 

See "A Tail in a Tail-Rhyme," by Jeffery Maiden, 
Gary Graham, and Nancy Fox, in Jabberwocky 
(Summer/ Autumn 1989), and its references. 

48. Add to Note 2: 

See an earher article, "Alice, WTio Are You?" by 
Fred Madden, \n Jabberwocky (Summer/ Autumn 
1988). He also mentions that Carroll owned 
a copy of MacKay's book, with its chapter on 
"Popular Follies in Great Cities." 

64. Add to Note 4: 

John Shaw, writing on "WTio Wrote 'Speak Gen- 
tly'?" m Jabberivocky (Summer 1972), also gives 
a history of the controversy in which he played 
such a major role. He provides a bibliography 
of 56 publications of poems that begin "Speak 



1 



gently." Carroll's parody, he concludes, "may 
well be an echo of all of them rather than any 
one of them." 

Carroll's parody has been set to music by Al- 
fred Scott Catty. The score, undated, is repro- 
duced '\n Jabberwocky (Winter 1970). 

65. Add to Note 5: 

Tenniel's picture of Alice holding the pig is one 
of his very few illustrations showing Alice full 
face, looking straight ahead. Note the foxgloves 
on the left. 

68. Add to Note 10: 

Ferdinand J. Soto, in The Carrollian (Spring 
1998) suggests that Alice left a straight road and 
for a short distance followed a circular path that 
put her back on the straight road. Of course the 
simplest explanation is that Tenniel failed to 
notice that Alice had "walked on." 

120. Add to Note 2: 

Adams has denied that he had Carroll in mind 
when his computer Deep Thought answered 
the "ultimate question." It was no more than a 
joke — a random number that popped into his 
head. (See Knight Letter, Summer 2005.) For 
more speculations about 42, see the three ar- 
ticles on the topic xn Jabberwocky (Spring 1993) 
and musings by Charles Ralphs and others in 
Jabberwocky (Winter/Spring 1989). 

136. Add to Note 2: 

Many attempts have been made to justify the 
eccentric moves in Carroll's chess game. See 
"Looking-Glass Chess" by Rev. J. Lloyd Davies in 
the Anglo-Welsh Review (Vol.19, Autumn 1970) 
and "Looking-Glass Chess" by Ivor Davies in 
Jabberwocky (Autumn 1971). The most detailed 
analysis is A. S. M. Dickins' lecture "Alice in 
Fairyland," as edited and expanded in Jabber- 
loocky (Winter 1976). The Fairyland is "fairy 
chess," a common term for variants of chess 
based on unorthodox pieces and rules. The ar- 
ticle is cited again in Chapter 3, Note 1, and 
Chapter 9, Note 1. Incidentally, Bird's opening, 
mentioned earlier in this note, is pawn to king 
bishop's four. 

137. Put a ^ after the chapter title. 
Add new note: 

An early draft of the table of contents for 
Through the Looking-Glass, located in the Hough- 
ton Library at Harvard University, shows that this 
chapter was originally to be called "The Glass 
Curtain"; Chapter V was once two chapters, 
"Living Backwards" and "Scented Rushes," most 
likely divided before the paragraph beginning 
"She looked at the Queen," (p. 200); Chapter 
VIII was called "Check!"; and Chapter XII was 
written in as "Whose Dream Was it?". See Matt 



Demakos's "The Annotated Wasp," Knight Letter 
(Winter 2003). 

146. Add to Note 9: 

For some strange reason, not yet understood, 
here Tenniel gave the White King the same 
crown as worn by queens, as he did with the Red 
King in the previous picture! Were they simply 
blunders on his part? If so, why did Carroll, who 
surely knew that a chess king is topped with a 
cross, not object? 

155. Add to Note 42: 

It is easy to write nonsense parodies of "Jabber- 
wocky": simply substitute new nonsense words 
for Carroll's. More difficult is to substitute words 
that make a sensible lyric poem. For example. 
Harvard professor Harry Levin, in his fine essay 
"Wonderland Revisited" in Jabberwocky (Autumn 
1970), does just this to produce the following 
lovely quatrain: 

'Twas April and the heavy rains 

Did drip and drizzle on the road: 

All misty were the windowpanes, 
And the drainpipes overflowed. 

181. Add to Note 1: 

A much later jingle is worth quoting: 

A divinity student named Tweedle 
Refused to accept his degree. 

"It's bad enough to be Tweedle," he said, 
"Without being Tweedle, D.D." 

Note that "Fiddle" can be substituted for "Twee- 
dle." 

208. Put '^'^ at the end of the first line below the 
poem. 

Add new note: 

4a. Alice's version of the nursery rhyme, with 
its faulty last line, actually appeared in an 1843 
London book titled Pictorial Humpty Dumpty. See 
Brian Riddle's "Musings on Humpty Dumpty," 
\r\ Jabberwocky (Summer/ Autumn 1989). The 
jingle's final line is usually "Couldn't put 
Humpty together again." 

226. Add to Note 8: 

See "Carroll, the Lion and the Unicorn," by Jef- 
frey Stern, in The Carrollian (Spring, 2000). 

241. Add to the end of the fourth paragraph from 

the bottom (after "deep ditch") the numeral 

8a 

Add new note 8a: 

Frankie Morris, in Jabberzvocky (Autumn, 1985) 
conjectures that the White Knight's inability to 
stay on his horse may have reflected the notori- 
ously bad horsemanship of King James I. 

Sir Walter Scott's novel The Fortunes of Nigel 
said the king had a specially constructed saddle 
to keep him locked on his horse, and Dickens, 



i 



260. 



in his Child's History of England, called James I 
"the worst horse rider ever seen." In 1692, his 
horse stumbled and threw him into an icy river 
so that only his boots were visible. This may have 
inspired Tenniel's drawing of Alice rescuing the 
White Knight from a ditch. 

At the end of the third paragraph from the bot- 
tom, after "thirty-times-three," add the numeral 
13a. 



Add new note 13a: 

Three-times-three was and still is a popular way 

of ending a toast with 3x3 = 9 cheers. 

Tennyson, in the conclusion of "In Memoriam," 

writes: 

Again the feast, the speech, the glee ... 

The crowning cup, the three-times-three. 

281. Add in the margin: 

In 2005, at a Christie's auction in New York City, 
the galleys sold for $50,000. 



298. Add the following paragraph to the note given 
in my previous supplement: 
See also a special issue oi Jabbenvocky (Summer 
1978) devoted to the symposium. Although the 
consensus was that the "Wasp in a Wig" galleys 
were authentic, all agreed that in the episode, 
although it presented Alice in a new light, the 
writing was not Carroll at his best, and that 
Tenniel was justified in suggesting that it be ex- 
cluded from the book. There was no agreement 
on where Carroll intended the episode to be 
placed. 

308. Add to the end of bibliography: 

Artist of Wonderland: The Life, Political Cartoons, 
and Illustrations of Tenniel. Frankie Morris, 2005. 




Mary KUne-Misol 
Oracle, 2003 
Acrylic on canvas 

M 70" X 24" 



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MARK BURSTEIN 

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It is difficult indeed to think of Iowa without hum- 
ming "Seventy-Six Trombones" or another of the 
fine songs from native son Meredith Wilson's The 
Music Man. In some ways, our fall meeting could have 
been in that River City in 1912 he so idealized: the 
sun was shining brightly on the cornfields as we ar- 
rived; it was "Discover Victorian Iowa" week, with its 
attendant festivities; and we dined 
in Edwardian splendor at a man- 
sion on Saturday. But I am getting 
ahead of the story. 

Friday afternoon saw the Max- 
ine Schaefer Reading at the Willard 
Elementary School, where fourth- 
graders were initiated into the 
world behind the looking-glass with 
a dramatic reading by Pat Griffin of 
the "Humpty Dumpty" chapter, and 
seemed delighted to receive their 
copies of the book. 

We met in the Iowa State His- 
torical Building on a sunny Satur- 
day, October 15, in downtown Des 
Moines ("The Monks," though 
none were visible). Actual biplanes 
were hanging from the ceiling, and 
exhibits ranged from the accom- 
plishments of famous lowans to the somewhat surreal 
display of objects that had been swallowed or coughed 
up, from the collection of a local bronchologist. 

First up was a welcome from our president, Alan 
Tannenbaum, to the forty-two or so souls gathered in 
a meeting room, and a few announcements, by and 
large bemoaning the nondelivery of two packages of 
books: Frankie Morris's Artist of Wonderland (p. 38) 
and Charlie Lovett's Lewis Carroll Among His Books {KL 
75:29). (They never did show up.) Alan also reported 
on a most cordial visit he had with Martin Gardner, 
who happens to live on the route betwixt Austin and 
Des Moines. 

David Schaefer, a charter member of our soci- 
ety and one whose Carroll collection began with his 
mother in the 1890s, treated us to complete or par- 
tial showings of nine Alice films, only two of which are 
commercially available. Movies were beginning to be 
shown in London as early as 1896, often at the end of 




theatrical presentations, so it is possible, although un- 
verifiable, that our Mr. Dodgson actually saw one. It 
has been speculated that he perhaps shunned them 
as lower-class entertainment. 

"Electric palaces" ("nickelodeons" in the U.S.) 
soon flourished, and Cecil Hepworth's silent Alice in 
Wonderland came out in 1903. David had the good 
fortune to meet Hepworth's 
daughter, who gave him some 
stills from the missing scenes, 
the correct colors in which to 
tone and stain the film, and 
an advertising soundtrack, 
promoting the then radically 
long ten-minute film (the 
audience's attention span 
was gauged to be three min- 
utes), which proclaimed it to 
have "no pantomime or stage 
effects." The actors were re- 
cruited from Hepworth's film 
crew. David's "colorizing," 
achieved digitally, had the con- 
sequence of making the film 
a bit contrasty and lacking in 
detail, but it did convey to us 
a sense of how it must have 
looked to the^w de siecle Siudience. (See KL 72:40-41 
for details. The film is commercially available.) 

Next up was the production by Thomas Edison's 
company, shot in the Bronx in 1910, and long be- 
lieved lost. This one was rather charming, and many 
of the characters were portrayed by young children. 
(Except Alice, of course. The tradition of actresses of 
teenage or later years playing her was unbroken until 
Irwin Allen's casting of Natalie Gregory, then nine, 
in his 1985 production.) Costuming was particularly 
outstanding, and the entire movie unfolds like ani- 
mated illustrations. 

A 16mm film released in 1930 of an "Alice in 
Wonderland" dance sequence from the United Artists 
picture Putting on the Ritz, with music by Irving Berlin, 
was next. One of the lyrics said it best, "through the 
looking-glass into Wonderland." It was a very acro- 
batic ballet, with its star, Joan Bennett, used to her 
best advantage, that is, neither singing nor dancing, 



but just mugging occasionally. One odd bit of busi- 
ness had the Lion propositioning the White Rabbit. 

Commonwealth Pictures of Fort Lee, New Jersey, 
put out what was called "the first sound talkie for chil- 
dren" in 1931, a year before the better-known Para- 
mount effort. The actress portraying Alice (who must 
have been in her thirties) sounded more than a bit 
like Lina Lamont (who, in Singing in the Rain, utters 
the immortal line "Whaddaya think I am, dumb or 
sumpm?"). 

We were then shown the newsreel footage of 
Mrs. Hargreaves' arrival in New York in 1932 for the 
centenary celebrations. Her welcoming committee 
consisted of the head librarian of Columbia, and the 
head of the chemistry department, surely no irony to 
the legions of her fans thirty years hence. 

A 1955 Popeye cartoon, Swee'Pea Through the 
Looking-Glass led into a Three Stooges animated car- 
toon from the same year. Moe was depicted as the 
White Rabbit, the March Hare, the King of Hearts, 
and three "Moe-m" Raths. Larry was the caterpillar, 
the dodo, and several others. Dialog was of the "I'm 
the Queen of Hearts, you stupid fuzzball" caliber. A 
1967 cartoon. Abbot and Costello in Blunderland, with 
the voices of Bud Abbott and Stu Erwin, followed the 
characters through a slapstick farce as they avoided 
Hopalong Tragedy, a 40-foot rabbit. Lines such as 
"I'm not the Queen of Hearts, I'm the Queen of 
Clubs (boink!)" ensued. Last up was the fabulous 
Betty [Boop] in Blunderland, from the Fleischer Stu- 
dios in 1933, widely available. 

Although the cafe in the building was unexpect- 
edly closed, fortune smiled upon us in the form of 
"World Food Day," whose venue was a three-block 
festival of food booths from all over the planet. I 
passed on the suitably Carrollian deep-fried Schweine- 
flugel (pig's wings), and found myself — outdoors on 
a sunny day in Iowa — listening to a live band from 
Central America while munching on pad thai and 
spanikopita, sipping freshly brewed tea from China. 
Not what I was necessarily expecting. 

We also had time to wander among Mary Kline- 
Misol's stunning retrospective of paintings (more on 
that below). As I mentioned, it was "Discover Victo- 
rian Iowa" week in Des Moines, sponsored by the State 
Historical Society, and a parlor had been set up within 
the exhibition, such as might have been in a Midwest 
home in 1880. There was a (suitably costumed) story- 
teller for children, and printed suggestions of read- 
ings, games, and activities were available. 

After lunch. Dr. Genevieve Brunet Smith (above 
right), our erstwhile secretary and longtime mem- 
ber, the artistic director of Histrio, a Washington, 
D.C., theater performing French plays, spoke next, 
although "spoke" is too mild a verb for her perfor- 
mance. The talk, "Portrait of an Artist," a fascinating 
look at Dodgson/Carroll through seven facets, was 




an utter delight, as Dr. 
Smith pulled out all 
the stops from her act- 
ing training, and gave 
an extraordinarily 
animated, flamboyant, 
fabulously theatrical 
reading of her paper, 
which contained a 
recitation of the young 
Dodgson's poem "My 
Fairy." The facets, for 
the record, were "a 

man of God," "a man of science," "a man of letters 
(pun intended)," "an illustrator," "a photographer," 
"an inventor and a composer," and "an indefatigable 
walker." 

After we'd settled back into our seats recovering 
from the wild ride. Dr. Frankie Morris (below) took 
the lectern. A Ph.D. in Art History, an experienced 
commercial artist and portraitist, and the author of 
Artist of Wonderland: The Life, Political Cartoons, and 
Illustrations of Tenniel 
(reviewed on p. 38), 
she engaged, in a talk 
largely drawn from 
her book, in what she 
termed "myth break- 
ing," portraying Ten- 
niel as an actor, a 
sportsman, and a fun- 
loving socialite, who 
was healthy and ath- 
letic into his nineties 
despite the childhood 
loss of the use of his 

right eye. Tenniel, historically important for his polit- 
ical cartoons for Punch, which were said to have "pre- 
cipitated wars and destroyed cabinets," is so entwined 
in the public consciousness with our society's name- 
sake that in her talk Morris once accidentally referred 
to them by a portmanteau, "Carriel." She discussed, 
with great knowledge and insight, the relationship of 
the two men (e.g., Tenniel lowered his usual fee for 
illustrations to £138 for the complete set of 42 draw- 
ings), the engraving process of the Dalziels and Ten- 
niel's contributions to the art of the woodblock, and 
other related matters. 

After a short break and a trading-and-selling 
frenzy among the attendees, Morris presented her 
second talk, "Attitudes, Misery, and Purring When 
You're Pleased." This fascinating, free-wheeling talk 
is slated to be published as an essay in The Carrollian, 
so we can only go over highlights here. She spoke to 
Parables from Nature (1855-1871), a five-part series for 
children by Dodgson's friend Margaret Gatty, and 
their influence on the Alice books; "Anglo-Saxon at- 









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titudes" in relation to the theatrical term "attitudes" 
in Dodgson's time (also called tableaux vivants or poses 
plastiques) , which she illustrated with some occasion- 
ally hilarious slides of British matrons in their "up- 
lifting" poses; and discussed echoes of Percy Bysshe 
Shelley in Carroll's early, "melancholic" poems. 

Three collectors then presented aspects of their 
collections via PowerPoint slides, as prelude to a 
panel discussion. First, August Imholtz chose to dis- 
cuss just one small corner of his collection, one oc- 
cupied by Russian translations. Although he regrets 
that he does not possess the first translation (1879), 
he has great depth in his holdings. He began in me- 
dias res talking about Nina Demurova, who was ap- 
proached in 1967 to translate a Bulgarian edition 
into Russian. Being of a practical mind, she inquired 
whether it wouldn't be a bit 
more appropriate to translate 
it from the English into Rus- 
sian, which she so successfully 
did. August proceeded to show 
us mainly illustrated covers of 
the books, which he catego- 
rized among the "traditional, 
primitive, crude, cutesy, fanci- 
ful, stylized, hideous, brilliant, 
or merely grotesque." Demuro- 
va's 1978 retranslation for the 
science publisher Nauka also 
contained annotations and es- 
says, one by the chief trainer of 
cosmonauts! 

"Hello, my name is Joel 
and I'm an Alice collector," 
began the second talk, by for- 
mer president Joel Birenbaum, 
who quite rightly compared 
us to a group of "Alice-holies 
Anonymous." "Hello, Joel!" we 
properly replied. He echoed 
the sentiments of all collectors, 
saying that he felt, like Alice in 

the WTiite Rabbit's home, that his house was shrinking 
as his holdings grew. He began by discussing "Alice in 
Popular Culture" (Booker's recent book of the same 
title barely glanced the surface, Joel feels), as "all 
things Alice" have infiltrated and permeated our ev- 
eryday lives. He next talked about "Alice in the News," 
illustrated by his July 1992 discovery, in the church in 
Croft where the senior Dodgson had been rector, of a 
stone carving of a cat's head, floating in the air a few 
feet above the floor, just like the Cheshire Cat. A small 
story in the Northern Echo was picked up nine days later 
by the Chicago Tribune, giving it front-page coverage, 
under pictures of the Pope and George Harrison. 
From there it went to the wire services, NPR, Readers ' 
Digest, and so on throughout the known universe. 




ANGLO-SAXON ATTITUDES 

CHARACTERISTIC DRAWINGS. ILLUSTRATIVE OF THE BIBLE STORY. 
FROM THE MANUSCJUPT OF THE CAEDMONIAN POEMS 
IN THEJUNIAN CODEX 



"Alice in Advertising" showed our heroine hawk- 
ing insulation, light and power, tomato juice, Philco 
refrigerators, Ford cars. Guinness beer, and so on 
throughout the years. Alice, he speculated, is the 
most recognized icon outside of Mickey Mouse, and, 
as she is out of copyright, a lot easier to tie one's 
product to. "Alice in Packaging" showed her on tea 
and toffee tins, clotted cream fudge, and so on; he 
narrated a small digression on how, on his first wed- 
ding anniversary, he and Debbie found themselves in 
an otherwise empty cow pasture in Lyndhurst where 
Alice once had lived. "Alice in Cloth" showed her por- 
trayed on pillowcases, bedspreads, curtains, and the 
omnipresent t-shirts; "Alice Here, Alice There, Alice 
Ever^-whichwhere," a miscellaneous category showed 
her on posters, cards, stamps, rulers, and even goth 
dolls; and, finally, "It's in the 
Cards, Alice" displayed greeting 
cards. Joel finished by saying he 
did not have time to even begin to 
show all his other ephemera: po- 
litical cartoons, games, toys, etc. 
Joel's talk is on the Web at www. 
lewiscarroll.org/meeting/2005fl/ 
popweb/popculture.html. 

The present writer took the 
microphone for "My Life with 
Alice: A Scrapbook," the story of 
his collection from 1928 (when 
his grandmother put Alice wall- 
paper in the nursery of his father, 
Sandor), through their serious 
collecting years from the mid- 
'70s to the present. Sandor, a for- 
mer Society president, traces his 
love for Carroll back to the first 
grade, when he was in love with 
his teacher, a Miss Kathleen Sher- 
man. She happened to be playing 
Alice in a local production, and 
he became enchanted. This tale 
had a charming follow-up in 1983, 
when our local paper had an article on the collection, 
and Sandor shortly thereafter received a call from a 
Mrs. Reno Biagini, whose maiden name was — Kath- 
leen Sherman. They had a lovely reunion, fifty years 
later. 

One of the things that is particularly uncommon 
in this day and age is that our entire collection, now 
numbering over 3,000 books and 1,300 objects, was 
assembled the old-fashioned way, without using the 
vast power of the Internet in search engines such 
as eBay or Alibris. Photos of some of the more rare 
items were shown: Chepmell's A Short Course of His- 
tory, Lawrence Melnick's unique hand-illustrated and 
calligraphed Looking-Glass, some fine hand-bindings. 
The Holy Land by Reverend Canon Duckworth, Car- 



^'^ ' A, ^,xr 



roll's own cribbage board and Alice Liddell's accor- 
dion, now fully restored. 

Other collectors had sent in slides of various 
items from their collections: David Schaefer's unique, 
original puppet of the Hatter from the 1951 Bunin 
film; a 100-foot roll of "Alice in Picnicland" (a runner 
for a supermarket display); lawn statuary, jewelry, and 
on and on. 

A short Q&A panel discussion, moderated by 
Alan Tannenbaum, followed: the most memorable 
question being about the fabled Protocols of the Elders 
of Wonderland. 

Our gracious and talented hostess, Mary Kline- 
Misol (right), spoke next to the central reason we 
were in Des Moines: her Alice Cycle, a retrospective 
of 42 paintings from 1988 to date. Her work began 
two decades ago at Drake University, where her thesis 
show involved drawing a "visual narrative," and her 
theme was the Alice books. To see her paintings to- 
gether for the first time was extraordinarily moving, 
both for the artist and those of us privileged to be in 
attendance. (For those who were not, she has most 
generously offered to send them, without charge, 
the stunning, full-color catalog!)' Her exquisitely 
rendered, powerful paintings (many are quite large, 
the biggest 50" x 80") celebrate Carroll's characters 
in an exuberant, yet personal way: e.g., a giant Duch- 
ess (seen from Alice's diminutive perspective); im- 
ages of transformation and growth, often based on 
photographs of Alice Liddell; a diptych called Nemesis 
(Alice and the Queen of Hearts). Two of these images 
grace our cover and page 3. 

"I have always been drawn to acrylics and con- 
tinue to work with them today. My paintings develop 
with images often spontaneously unfolding as the 
work progresses. Figures and objects appear, only to 
be hidden under subsequent layers of paint as I at- 
tempt to catch that elusive moment that will commu- 
nicate my inner vision. My techniques include scum- 
bling (painting thin layers of opaque light color over 
dark colors, which gives a broken color effect) and 
glazing (brushing a transparent paint over another, 
thoroughly dried layer of opaque paint). These tech- 
niques mix the colors optically rather than on the 
palette, and the result is a shimmery, opalescent sur- 
face, creating a unique 'shine-through' stained-glass 
effect that cannot be achieved with a direct mixture 
of paint. The technique of glazing came out of the 
Northern Renaissance, where it was used to give more 
dimension to egg tempera paintings. Flemish paint- 
ers perfected the technique." 

It is difficult to imagine a more enchanting, mag- 
ical, and masterly collection of artworks around this 
theme. Please send for her catalog and/or visit her 
Web site, www.angelfire.com/art/MKMisol/. 




We then moseyed over to the Salisbury House 
for an elaborate banquet hosted by Mary and her 
husband, Sinesio. The House, an official "national 
treasure," is a mansion of 42 (of course) rooms, right 
off 42nd (of course) Street, modeled after the King's 
House in Salisbury, England. Built between 1923 and 
1928 for Carl and Edith Weeks and situated on a ten- 
acre landscaped garden, it was designed and built to 
look like a centuries-old English manor and, as such, 
incorporated elements from Gothic, Tudor, and six- 
teenth-century British buildings, including the ceiling 
from the White Hart Inn in Salisbury, where Shake- 
speare's troupe is believed to have performed.'^ Some 
of our older members may have recalled the fireplace 
in the dining room as the spot from which Vincent 
Price hosted The Chevy Mystery Shoxv in 1960. Tours of 
the house were available, and the eclectic collections 
of paintings, rare books and documents, and rugs and 
tapestries were on view, although many of us chose to 
remain in the foyer, among the hors d'oeuvres and 
the exceptional paintings of the six wives of Henry 
VIII by one Mary Kline-Misol. After that, it was "all 
feasting and fun" long into the evening. Mary, who 
put the entire program together, and Sinesio are to 
be congratulated, roundly commended, and thanked 
for a most enjoyable and unforgettable day, and their 
exquisitely generous hospitality. We're delighted to 
have given Iowa a try. 

1 Write to her at 1660 NW 120th St., Clive lA 50325, 
sending $2 cash or check to cover postage. Email: 
smkmisol@mchsi.com. 

2 vvww.salisburyhouse.org 




V -1 



jolktore ml j|t|lt|otogt| In \\c 



FREDERICK C. LAKE 



'.:>x '" 




Critics have pondered the books' magic and 
tried to explain it. What are they all about, they 
ask, and why so universally successful? What is 
the key to their enchantment, why are they 
so entertaining and yet so enigmatic? What 
charm enables them to transcend language as 
well as national and temporal differences and 
win their way into the hearts of young and old 
everywhere and always? 

- Morton Cohen, Lewis Carroll: A Biography 

The fantasy classics of the nineteenth-century Ox- 
ford don, mathematician, cleric, and photographer, 
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, writing under the name 
Lewis Carroll, are among the most popular books in 
the world. Do the disciplines of folklore and mythol- 
ogy — the study of mankind's most timeless and uni- 
versal tales — help to explain why these works are so 
universal and enduring? 

Folklore was, perhaps, among the first critical ap- 
proaches ever suggested for these books. The idea is 
in a letter to the author himself, from a fellow aca- 
demic pointing out the parallels between the Alice 
books and classic world myths: 

Are we to suppose, after all, that the saga of the 
Jabberwocky is one of the universal heirlooms 
which the Aryan race at its dispersion carried 
with it from the great cradle of the family? You 
really must consult Max Miiller about this. It 
is probable that the origo originalissima may be 
discovered in Sanskrit, and that we shall by 
and by have a labrivokaveda. The hero will turn 
out to be the Sun-God in one of his Avatars; 
and the Tumtum tree the great Ash Yggdrasil 
of the Scandinavian mythology.^ 

This article was first presented as a talk at The Lewis Carroll 
Phenomenon: An International and Interdisciplinary Conference 
on April 3, 1 998, at Cardiff University of Wales, as adapted 
and abridged from "Folkloristic Aspects of Lewis Carroll's Mice's 
Adventures in Wonderland anrf Through the Looking-Glass, " 
presented to the Committee on Degrees in Folklore and Mythology in 
partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of bachelor of arts, 
with honors, from Harvard College, Cambridge, Massachusetts, on 
March 21, 1980. This talk was later given at a meeting of the Lewis 
Carroll Society of North America at Harvard on May 8, 2004, and 
adapted for print by the author. 



Robert Scott, Dean of Rochester, wrote the letter 
in 1872, shortly after the publication of Through the 
Looking-Glass and seven years after Wonderland had first 
seen print. Under a pseudonym. Dr. Scott published a 
German translation of "Jabberwocky," and suggested 
that his rendering was the Germanic original from the 
dark past. Carroll good-naturedly sent Dr. Scott a sup 
posedly older version of the poem, a Latin translation 
by Carroll's own uncle.'' Both Scott and Carroll sensed 
the link between traditional narratives and the two 
Alice books. But that was that. Neither man elaborated 
further. Here we continue the task. 

In the first stanzas of the prefatory poem of Look- 
ing-Glass, Carroll twice calls the book a "fairy-tale," 
and concludes the poem by reminding us of that. 
"Fairy tale" may signify any fantastical, nonsense story, 
as the two books patently are. But, as critics acknowl- 
edge, Carroll's nonsense, like the fairy tale, harbors 
ideas of sober worth. Thus we ask, is the label only a 
metaphor, or does it more exactly define the works 
on their formal models in English narrative tradition? 
Are they "folk fictions of which magical or supernatu- 
ral episodes are a necessary part,""* called "Ordinary 
Folk-Tales" by Antti Aarne and Stith Thompson in 
their monumental index of tale types?^ 

Whether or not it was Carroll's conscious inten- 
tion to do so, circumstances surrounding Wonderland 
and Looking-Glass suggest that they were effectively 
modeled on folktale. Specifically, Victorian attitudes 
towards the folktale and children's literature, women 
in the European bardic tradition, and traditional sto- 
rytelling all influenced the Alice books. 

As the nineteenth century progressed, an increas- 
ing number of Victorians came to believe that folktale 
was particularly appropriate for children, and that 
being so, tales for children should be folktales. Thus, 
protest was heard when, early in the century, English 
children's literature turned to facts and moralizing, 
and away from the traditional imagination.*^ In a let- 
ter to Coleridge, Charles Lamb asked, "Is there no 
possibility of averting this sore evil? Think what you 
would have been now, if instead of being fed with 
tales and old wives' fables in childhood, you had been 
crammed with geography and natural history?"' 



Since domestic authors at the beginning of the 
nineteenth century did not meet the demand for the 
sort of Hterature Lamb and others admired, England 
looked elsewhere. In the stories of Hans Christian 
Andersen, a reviewer found "one notable and delight- 
ful exception. ... On the quaintness of author — only 
approached or excelled by those of Hawthorne — we 
need not descant now."^ In 1823, Taylor produced 
the first English rendering of the German folktales 
collected by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm; similar works 
would follow.^ 

In his youth, Carroll showed his distaste for the 
standard fare for children. Some of his early poems 
parody the conventional, pietistic middle-class chil- 
dren's literature.'" He also began to bring folklore 
into his writings. Other poems were reworkings of 
such folk ballads as "The Twa Brothers."" The open- 
ing verse of Useful and Instructive Poetry, the first of the 
family magazines written by the young Carroll to en- 
tertain his large family, was titled "My Fairy." Written 
when Carroll was thirteen, its first line was propheti- 
cally, "I have a fairy by my side," a harbinger for this 
master of fairy tales to be.''^ 

By the time Carroll published Wonderland, Victo- 
rians were more susceptible to the study of folklore. 
The works of the philologists, such as Max Miiller, 
were objects of keen interest.'^ Although a few English 
authors, Kingsley (in The Water-Babies) and Thackeray 
(in The Rose and the Ring), for instance, moved in the 
direction of the fairy tale. Wonderland embraced it. A 
crowd of emulative children's works followed Carroll, 
with authors frequently assimilating fairy tales and 
folk material into their writing. 

Carroll stood apart from other writers who were 
interested in traditional tales; additionally, he ad- 
opted the legendary poses of the unlettered storytell- 
ers. We may look, for example, to Homer as a model 
of these figures, whose methods were decoded in The 
Singer of Tales, Albert Lord's monumental work de- 
scribing the techniques of oral epic poetry as well as 
storytellers' techniques from oral tradition.''* Hom- 
er's invocations to the muse are familiar. The spirit of 
the muse is the bard's inspiration; the poet is merely 
made clairvoyant by her. The goddess herself is the 
source of the tale, and Homer calls on her spirit to 
tell it through him.'"' 

Alice Liddell was Dodgson's muse. "The sole me- 
dium of the stories is her pellucid consciousness," 
wrote Walter de la Mare."' Carroll's photographs of 
her reveal an ethereal character, as does the terminal 
poem of Looking-Glass: 

Still she haunts me, phantomwise, 
Alice moving under skies 
Never seen by waking eyes.'" 



In Wonderland's prefatory verses, which depict the 
now famous boat ride, a pantheon of muses governs 
the author: 

Imperious Prima flashes forth 

Her edict "to begin it": 
In gentler tones Secunda hopes 

"There will be nonsense in it." 
While Tertia interrupts the tale 

Not more tha.n once a minute.'** 

The storyteller is indebted to a feminine model 
not only for inspiration, but also for preserving his 
tales. The English folktale, as it has survived to mod- 
ern times, is in large part a tradition of stories told by 
older women about younger girls. Rather expectedly, 
most of the informants listed in Katherine Briggs' Dic- 
tionary of British Folk-Tales are women.'-' 

At Wonderland's conclusion, Alice recounts her 
dream adventures to her older sister, who then falls to 
dreaming. A grown Alice replaces the teller of tales in 
this vision. Like the man, Carroll, who precedes her, 
she gathers young children to hear her stories. In the 
passage, the older girl "pictured to herself how this 
same little sister of hers would, in the after-time, be 
herself a grown woman . . . and how she would gather 
about her other little children, and make their eyes 
bright and eager with many a strange tale, perhaps 
even with the dream of Wonderland of long ago."-" 

The scheme for the transmission of oral tales, 
ultimately derived from oral literature, frames the 
creation of Wonderland and Looking-Glass. A female 
muse (the child Alice) inspires the male bard (Lewis 
Carroll). The bard entrusts his tales — about girls and 
maidens (the fictional Alice) — to an older woman 
(the mature Alice of her sister's dream), who passes 
his stories to yet other children. Carroll's muse, un- 
like those of Virgil or Milton, is not a literary device. 
In fact, it could be said, no muse more liberally be- 
stowed her blessings on a storyteller. One woman, in 
her real and fictional form and in her two ages, ful- 
fills all the necessary roles. 

With his own words, the author calls us down a 
folkloric rabbit hole. In addition to his bardic pose, 
aspects of Dodgson's personal behavior resemble that 
of the oral traditional storyteller. The materials of the 
oral conteur 2ire preexisting.^' The same world is acces- 
sible in every retelling of the story, and the conteur can 
imaginatively, even playfully, manipulate his materi- 
als.'^^ Unlike print, the oral medium is not static, and 
thus we find multiforms of traditional stories. The 
tales he told "were not entirely new. Sometimes they 
were versions of old stories; sometimes they started 
on the old basis but grew into new tales. "'^"^ Carroll 
wrote down the original narration of Alice's adven- 
tures merely to accommodate those who insisted that 
he preserve his oral story. 



The parallelism of the Alice books suggests that 
they resemble each other, as do the multiforms of an 
oral traditional tale. The topical details vary, but the 
motifs they represent remain. In the duad, the same 
heroine leaves on a dream journey. The kings and 
queens of Wonderland's game of cards correspond 
to the kings and queens of the chess game in Look- 
ing-Glass. At the end of her first set of journeys, Alice 
gains a towering stature, and at the end of her second 
she becomes a queen. Both stories conclude with the 
chaotic degeneration of their respective worlds and a 
rude awakening for the heroine. 

More importantly, however, the books appear to 
be multiforms of tales from oral tradition itself. They 
exhibit story patterns that have been discovered in 
the imaginative traditions of many groups, narrative 
patterns encompassing both lore and myth. The anal- 
ysis of the disciplines of folklore and mythology has 
many approaches, ranging from historical through 
psychological and semiotic. "Folk and myth" studies 
may also be multidisciplinary and include compara- 
tive literature or religion. There are some approaches 
that would be familiar to those not in the field: Jung- 
ian analysis could reveal the universal archetypes of 
human thought; mythic analysis could illustrate how 
they are another incarnation of what Joseph Camp- 
bell calls mankind's great monomyth: "always the one, 
shape-shifting yet marvelously constant story that we 
find, together with a challengingly persistent sugges- 
tion of more remaining to be experienced then ever 
will be told."24 

We will not attempt an encyclopedic foray into 
the mythic elements of the Alices here; such a task 
awaits a future scholar. The works are infused with 
the essence of folklore and mythology — completing 
such a scholarly venture would open the narrative 
and symbolic elements of the Alices, like a prism re- 
vealing the spectrum of colors within its white light of 
imagination. The spirit of Dodgson would be amused 
by such exegesis. However, here we shall start nar- 
rowly, and find or identify the inextricable links be- 
tween the AZic^ books and a select number of timeless 
girl-tales found in traditions worldwide. As creating 
tales for the amusement (not betterment) of little 
girls was the author's original intent, we will defer to 
his spirit. 

A simple folkloric method will serve to start. The 
AZic^ books, among other things, are a literary trans- 
formation of interrelated classes of tales from oral 
tradition, which convention describes as the Substi- 
tuted Bride, '^'' the Search for the Lost Spouse, and, 
most familiar to us all, Cinderella. This broad classi- 
fication suits the structure and heroine of the books, 
although their details reveal links with a diverse range 
of traditional materials. A literary rendering of these 
tales was not new: a version of the Substituted Bride 
is found in Genesis in the story of Jacob and his mar- 



riages to Laban's two daughters. ^'^ Classical antiquity 
offers Apuleius' "Cupid and Psyche." In fact, "Cupid 
and Psyche" is the folklorists' synonym for the tale 
of the Search for the Lost Spouse, which frequently 
combines with elements of the two others. Literary 
adaptations of the Cinderella story are numerous. 
Most know the story by way of Perrault's seventeenth- 
century retelling, although some of the embellish- 
ments and details in his version are unknown in oral 
tradition. '^^ 

Nevertheless, the Alices are not mere retellings 
of tales heard elsewhere. They are a manifestation of 
basic imaginative designs that are virtually worldwide 
narrative currency. 

The similarity between the structures of Wonder- 
land and Looking-Glass is more apparent when they 
are compared to the Search for the Lost Spouse. 
What distinguishes that tale is the breaking of a 
taboo: The heroine fails to follow the instructions of 
an enchanted husband or other member of her fam- 
ily. After the violation she embarks on a journey. In 
her travels she endures tasks and experiences associ- 
ated with maturation. At the journey's conclusion, she 
may reunite with her husband or family or acquire 
a new status. Often, the heroine becomes a queen, 
since her previously enchanted husband proves to be 
a prince. 2** 

Disobedience is implicit at the start of both of 
Alice's adventures. In the opening scenes of Looking- 
Glass, Alice is curled up in an armchair playing with 
her kitten. Because of the cat's mischief, Alice's talk 
turns to the subject of punishment: "'Suppose they 
saved up all my punishments?' she went on, talking 
more to herself than the kitten. 'What would they do 
at the end of the year? I should be sent to prison I 
suppose, when the day came.'" Or, if the punishment 
was to go without dinner, at the end of the year she 
could skip the meal for quite a while. "'Well,' Alice 
says, 'I shouldn't mind that much!'" But the violation 
that begins her Journey is associated with the look- 
ing-glass itself. After she passes through the mirror, 
which hangs over the chimney-piece, she discovers 
that the house on the other side of the mirror also 
has a fire in the fireplace. When she enters Looking- 
glass House, "The very first thing she did was to look 
whether there was a fire in the fireplace. ... 'So I shall 
be as warm here as I was in the old room,' thought 
Alice: 'warmer, in fact, because there'll be no one 
here to scold me away from the fire. Oh, what fun it'll 
be, when they see me through the glass in here, and 
ca'n't get at me!'"^^ 

As for Wonderland, Alice would never have got- 
ten there if she had not been disobedient or, at least, 
impetuous. She is sitting by her older sister, very tired, 
when the White Rabbit first runs by. The narration 
implies that Alice should have been corrected for not 
thinking about following a talking rabbit. "When she 



10 



thought it over afterwards, it occurred to her that she 
ought to have wondered at this.'"^" 

It is remarkable, however, that the details Carroll 
uses in his tales of maturation are like those in the 
variants of the Search for the Lost Spouse. The motif 
of the glass mountain or glass house is associated with 
a variety of traditional girl-tales in diverse cultures.'^' 
A typical labor for the heroine on her search for her 
lost spotxse is to climb a glass mountain. The first time 
she tries, she fails. Only after a period of service is 
she worthy of the task. In the first chapter of Wonder- 
land, Alice grows shorter after drinking a potion. She 
wants the gold key on the glass table in order to open 
the door to the garden, yet she is so small she can- 
not reach it. She tries to climb one of the glass table's 
legs, but it is too slippery. Only after the social rigors 
of Wonderland can Alice move on to the next level of 
maturity. At the beginning of her next journey, she 
easily accomplishes the climb up to and through the 
looking-glass. 

In the story of the Substituted Bride, the heroine 
confronts a rival. A key motif of the story persists: when 
the heroine comes to take her rightful spot, she is, at 
first, unrecognized. Alice, too, faces a similar prob- 
lem at the conclusion of Looking-Glass: Alice's long 
march down the chessboard ends when she crosses 
the last brook and becomes a queen. A golden crown 
appears on her head, and the other queens. Red and 
White, appear at her side. Alice knows she is a queen; 
she has discovered a crown on her head. The others 
are not so quick to see it. In fact, the Red Queen in- 
sists on treating Alice like a child: "Speak when you're 
spoken to!" Only after the Red Queen realizes that 
Alice calls herself a queen, she breaks off, thinks a 
while, and then protests to Alice: "What right have 
you to call yourself so?"-''^ 

The story of the Substituted Bride is complete 
when the heroine vanquishes the rival and wins her 
husband. On her last turn in the chess game, Alice 
captures the Red Queen and checkmates, or "mates," 
the Red King. 

Alice's actions are like those of the heroines in 
the tales of the Substituted Bride and the Search for 
the Lost Spouse, but in character she more resembles 
the unpromising heroine of the Cinderella story. The 
features that distinguish the cinder-girl remain in 
powerful associative orbit about the tale. As a rule, 
Cinderella is the youngest daughter; she must also 
overcome "shiftless habits,"'^' and her place is by the 
ashes of the hearth. Alice is all of these. In Wonderland, 
she is the youngest sister. She is also less industrious. 
Her sister reads while "Alice was beginning to get very 
tired ...of having nothing to do."'^ Similarly, an idle 
Alice in Looking-Glass tells her cat that she has been 
watching the boys collect wood for a bonfire. Most 
striking, however, is Alice's continual association with 
hearths and ashes. When she passes through the mir- 



ror into Looking-glass House, one of the first things 
she notices is the chess pieces among the cinders. She 
proceeds to pick up the WTiite King and dust off the 
ashes. Finally, during one of Wonderlands growing in- 
cidents, Alice gets so tall her feet go almost out of 
sight. She says she will have to send them boots every 
Christmas by carrier. The address: 

Alice's Right Foot, Esq. 
Hearthrug, 

near the Fender, 

{with Alice's love) ^^ 

The architecture of the books becomes clearer 
when they are viewed with other stories in oral tra- 
dition. In fact, some things are apparent only when 
viewed with their folktale counterparts. The struc- 
ture of events in Wonderland and Looking-Glass, for 
instance, is discernible when compared with widely 
scattered versions of the Search for the Lost Spouse. 
Alice's attack on the Red Queen is not just an obliga- 
tory conclusion of the chess scheme, although the 
commonfolk women from whom related stories were 
collected in the British Isles would be likely to under- 
stand the Red Queen's fate. WTiat she signifies derives 
not only from the text of Carroll's tale, but also from 
the multiforms of the comparable tales in oral tra- 
dition. Each oral tale reinforces the next, and their 
seemingly incomprehensible elements gain mean- 
ing through their repeated association. Oral tales 
explain, through the recurrences of tradition, what 
is happening in each other. ^^ In relation to the oral 
tradition of comparable tales, Alice's fall down the 
rabbit hole is not an isolated or chance event. Rather, 
it is a necessary first step in the fantastic journey un- 
dertaken by countless girls in their transformation, in 
fable, to adulthood. Following something down a well 
is a familiar means by which a traditional tale initiates 
such ajourney. 

More broadly, the descent into the underworld is 
a universal mythic motif found in Sumerian, Norse, 
Greek, Latin- and North American Indian myth, to 
name just a few ancient traditions originating long 
before Dante wrote of his descent into the inferno. ^^ 
In each case, the culture creates its own details rel- 
evant to its world and beliefs. 

The case of "the best known of all folktales," as 
Stith Thompson calls Cinderella, demonstrates the 
topical variety a story pattern may exhibit.^** Not all 
of the Cinderella-type stories have identical feattires. 
The abusive stepmother fails to appear in every tell- 
ing of the tale. Like Proteus, daimon servant of the 
god of the sea, the tale "will assume all manner of 
shapes of things that move upon the earth"'^'' and stay 
the same vmderneath. 

Thus, what distinguishes folktales or myths is not 
their particular manifestation, but the energy they 
bring to bear. The natural world offers a fitting an- 



il 



alogue, as modern physicists are struck by their fre- 
quent inabiHty to distinguish matter from energy. A 
tale or mythic archetype can shed its narrative matter, 
change guises, and still retain its essence. This occurs 
in folktale, and in the works of Lewis Carroll. The 
examples presented here are only several among the 
numerous parallels with folklore and mythology that 
can be discerned in the Alice books. No wonder that 
a century after the author's death, readers have been 
haunted by an energy, a text fraught with meaning, 
which escapes identification. 

In the rendering of Carroll's books, the folk and 
myth model bears the Victorian trappings well. Tales 
in the oral tradition or from the mythic realm must 
always adapt to contrasting contexts. The folktale is a 
remarkable imaginative tool that succeeds in all sorts 
of applications and still remains the same, a story 
about what makes a socially competent woman sur- 
vives different uses, despite parochial twists. Although 
layers of detail, like a view through a kaleidoscope, 
transform our view of the essence of the story, com- 
parison and close scrutiny reveal that the timeless 
and universal tale is still there. 

' Epigraph. Morton N. Cohen, Lewis Carroll: A Biography 

(New York: Knopf, 1995), 135. 
'^ Robert Scott to Lewis Carroll, 1872, quoted in Robert 

Phillips, Aspects of Alice (New York: Vintage, 1971), 377. 
^ Carroll to Robert Scott, February 27, 1872, in Morton N. 

Cohen, with the assistance of Roger Lancelyn Green, The 

Letters ofLeivis Carroll (New York: Oxford University Press, 

1979), 172. 
"* Katherine M. Briggs, A Dictionary of British Folklore 

(Bloomington: Indiana University Press), Part A, 1:133. 

^ Ibid., 1:133. 

'' Donald Rackin, "Corrective Laughter: Carroll's Alice 

and Popular Children's Literature of the Nineteenth 

Century," Journal of Popular Culture 12 (1972): 244. 
"^ Charles Lamb to Samuel Coleridge, October 23, 1802, in 

Rackin, "Corrective Laughter," 244-5. 
^ Anonymous, "Children's Books," The Athenaeum \900 

(December 16, 1865), 844, in Phillips, 83-4. Anderson's 

tales were not true folktales, but his ovm invention. 
^ Dennis Butts, "The Beginnings of Victorianism" in Peter 

Hunt, Children's Literature: An Illustrated History (Oxford: 

Oxford University Press, 1995), 86. 
'" Rackin, "Corrective Laughter," 247-8. 
" M. A. Baxter, "The Twa Brothers: The Original of the 

Two Brothers," Jabberwochy S, no. 2 (Spring 1979), 43-5. 
''^ Cohen, Lewis Carroll, 12-4. 



'•' Robert D. Sutherland, Language and Lewis Carroll (The 

Hague: Mouton, 1970), 43-6. Miiller held a professorship 

at Oxford from 1868 to 1876, and was a Christ Church 

colleague (and photographic subject) of Carroll's. See 

also Cohen, Leuiis Cairoll, 76, 162, and 390. 
''^ Albert B. Lord, The Singer of Tales (New York: Atheneum, 

1971). 
'"' For example, at the beginning of the Iliad, the poet 

invokes the muse to sing: "Sing, Goddess, the anger of 

Achilles..." 
'^' Harry Levin, "Wonderland Revisited," in Phillips, Aspects 

of Alice, 179. 
' -^ Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice 

FoundThere (London: Macmillan, 1871), 223. 
'** Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (London: 

Macmillan, 1865). 
''■^ Cf. these British variants of the Cinderella, Substitute 

Bride, and Search for the Lost Spouse tales: "Catskin II," 

"The Green Lady: I," and "Glass Mountain." Briggs, A 

Dictionary of British Folklore, 179, 286-9, 273-4. 
2'* Carroll, "Which Dreamed It?" in Wonderland, 192. 
^' Barre Tolken, The Dynamics of Folklore (Boston: Houghton 

Mifflin, 1979), 32. 
'^'^ David E. Bynum, The Daemon in the Wood (Cambridge, 

MA: The Center for the Study of Oral Literature, 1979), 

97. 
^^ Quoted in Roger Lancelyn Green, "Alice," in Phillips, 

Aspects of Alice, 14. 
'^'^ Joseph Campbell, The Hero With a Thousand Faces 

(Princeton: BoUingen, 1973), 3. 
^^ The Substituted Bride story is that in which a sister or 

stepsister, usually aided by her mother, takes a wife's 

place without the knowledge of the husband and 

banishes the wife. 
26 Genesis, 29: 16-28. 
^' Stith Thompson, The Folktale (Berkeley: University of 

California, 1977), 127. 
"^^ Ibid., 49. Also, Jan-Ojvind Swahn, The Tale of Cupid and 

Psyche (Lund: Gleerup, 1955), 27-36. 
^^ Lewis Carroll, "Looking-Glass House," in Looking-Glass, 

12-3. 
^^ Carroll, "Down the Rabbit-Hole," in Wonderland, 2. 
3' Swahn, The Tak of Cupid and Psyche, 28, 245. 
^^ CarroW, "Queen Mice," in Looking-Glass, 186-7. 
^^ Thompson, The Folktale, 125. 

•'''* Carroll, "Down the Rabbit-Hole," in Wonderland, 1. 
^^ Carroll, "The Pool of Tears," in Wonderland, 16. 
■*'' Bynum, The Daemon in the Wood, 65. 
^' Robert W. Brockaway, Myth from the Ice Age to Mickey Mouse 

(Albany: SUNY Press, 1993), 109. Originally published in 

Dalhousie Review, Jdnuary 1983. ^^--'^ 

^^ Thompson, The Folktale, 128. - -^ 

•^'J Homer, Odyssey, FV, 11, 417-8. 



12 




^^ 

ABOARD THE TROJAN HORSE 



MARK BURSTEIN 





^he spring 2006 meeting of our Society took 
place over several days in the Los Angeles 
area, in conjunction with a two-day confer- 
ence, "Lewis Carroll and the Idea of Childhood," 
hosted by the University of Southern California (USC, 
home of the Trojans). Jim Kincaid (below). Profes- 
sor of English at USC and author of many books in 
Victorian and sexuality/childhood studies, including 
Child Loving: The Erotic Child and Victorian Culture and 
his send-up of criticism. Annoying the Victorians, ^ was 
the coordinator and, in many ways, the raison d'etre 
for this conference. His warm, witty style and irrever- 
ent attitude toward some of the 
pretensions of academia were 
a welcome relief to those of us 
who had been worried about the 
likelihood of such a conference 
being "the driest thing I know." 
Kincaid's selection of speakers 
(and hilarious introductions to 
them) reflected a great sense 
of humor. Let us also praise Tyson Gaskill, Director 
of Programming/Information Services; Diane Wag- 
goner (below); Andrew Wulf, Exhibitions Manager; 
Melinda Hayes, Curator of the USC Carroll Collec- 
tion; and the great generosity of the sponsors of this 
conference, Dr. George Cassady and Linda Parker. 
There were probably upwards of 200 people who 
came to one or more of the events, although no more 
than 60 at any given time. 

The festivities began with a Maxine Schaefer 
reading on March 30. Herewith, a report from An- 
drew Sellon: 

"On Thursday, an intrepid band of LCSNA regu- 
lars visited the Norwood Street School in Los Angeles 
to present the Maxine Schaefer Memorial Reading. 
We were warmly welcomed by principal Francis Gold- 
man, who gave a brief tour of the 1940s Art Deco 
facility before we settled into the modest but charm- 
ing library. Two stuffed pink flamingos lurked in an 
aisle, as if hoping to pardcipate. A number of us were 
heartened when Ms. Goodman noted that she had 
opted not to participate in the "Accelerated Reader" 
program {KL 74:10-11), as she did not feel it would 
encourage the children to see the library as a welcom- 



ing place. At the appointed time, about fifty extremely 
well-mannered students filed into the library. 

"Alan Tannenbaum spoke briefly about the Soci- 
ety, and David Schaefer explained the history of the 
readings and the memorial bookplate. I then read 'A 
Mad Tea Party' to the very responsive audience. The 
question and answer session afterward was, as always, 
lively and surprising. The dormouse ranked as their 
favorite character (possibly resulting from the singu- 
lar sound effect, which had somehow emerged from 
my mouth, of his being suddenly awakened). The 
students were very much in tune with Alice's predica- 
ment of finding herself in a world of rude adults or- 
dering her about; one clever student even surmised 
that Alice might have met with additional resent- 
ment as a result of being the Dean's daughter. As they 
filed out, each child was given his or her own copy 
of the beautiful Books of Wonder edition of Wonder- 
land, and their delight was palpable. Afterward, the 
LCSNA members agreed that, going forward, one of 
the members will write down the highlights of these 
discussions, as some of the comments are remarkable 
and well worth sharing at meetings and on the Soci- 
ety's Web site." 

Friday's events took place within the Edward L. 
Doheny Jr. Memorial Library of USC's University Park 
Campus, a stately, Romanesque building completed 
in 1932. It began with a welcome from our president, 
Alan Tannenbaum, andjim Kincaid, jokingly proclaim- 
ing this "the most significant gathering of Lewis Carroll 
notables in history," declaring we "would not be ham- 
strung by what others think sane," and promising to 
"lessen our dimwittedness." 

First up was Hilary Schor (below), Professor of 
English, Comparative Literature and Gender Studies 
at the USC College of Letters, Arts & Sciences, and 
author of several books on Vic- 
torian fiction, whose enthu- 
siastic delivery of her paper 
"Realism's Alice: Making the 
Heroine Curiouser" made for 
a lively opening session. Her 
thesis was that the Alice books 
belong more to the world of 
realism than fantasv, a curious 




13 



idea. In fact, she began with a disquisition on the word 
"curious" and how often, and where, it occurs in the 
text (for the record, including "curiosity," 26 times in 
Wonderland alone) and the double meaning of Alice's 
being called a "very curious child." The nineteenth- 
century Oxfordian Matthew Arnold was quoted from 
his Culture and Anarchy (1882): "I have before now 
pointed out that we English do not, like the foreign- 
ers, use this word ["curious"] in a good sense as well 
as in a bad sense. With us [English] the word is always 
used in a somewhat disapproving sense. A liberal and 
intelligent eagerness about the things of the mind 
may be meant by a foreigner when he speaks of cu- 
riosity, but with us the word always conveys a certain 
notion of frivolous and unedifying activity." 

Defining the genre with a recitation of first lines 
from other Victorian novels with female protagonists 
{Emma, Portrait of a Lady, Middlemarch, Jane Eyre) , she 
began at the end of Wonderland, musing on the debunk- 
ing by the bank, which contradicts all that has gone 
before: the ordinary world is reasserted, as is so charac- 
teristic of Gothic novels. Wonderland is "recognizable 
as our world, just a bit off," a dream novel perhaps, yet 
its setting is everyday life — tea parties and other famil- 
iar things, somehow dreadfully out of place. 

Schor stated that the essence of this novel is to 
be found in transformations of size (the chapters 
not involving size changes were all added after Under 
Ground, she noted), as Alice measures herself against 
dreamworld objects. Confusion of the meanings of 
the phrase "growing up" is central. How does Alice 
know it is she who is transforming, and not the objects 
and characters in the environment? We were shown 
the opening scenes of the Hepworth movie and Tom 
Petty 's Don 't Come Around Here No More video, as Schor 
spoke more on "tricks of vision being the heart of this 
curious world." 

At the end of her presentation, she candidly ad- 
mitted that not only did she dislike the Alice books, but 
that the premise for her talk was "not particularly true, 
but I knew I could talk about it for forty-five minutes 
anyway." Her frank confession, wit, and great sense of 
absurdity made for a most entertaining discourse. 

Ah, now what can one 
possible say about a Professor 
of English Literature and Fem- 
inist Theory at the University 
of Connecticut and advisor to 
the Library of Congress who 
is also the author of a multi- 
tude of humorous books such 
as I'm with Stupid, They Used to 
Call Me Snow White. . . But I Drifted, and Perfect Husbands 
(&' Other Fairy Tales) and whose comedic stylings and 
improvisations mock the myth of the desiccated aca- 
deme? In two words: Gina Barreca (above). ^ 




Her talk, "Alice and Dorothy: Why These Two 
Babes in Boyland Don't Surrender," was a disquisition 
on female independence and authority, emphasizing 
that these two girls did not submit, surrender, nor 
sacrifice themselves. (Incidentally, the line "Surren- 
der, Dorothy" comes from the film, not the book.) In 
speaking of the aggressive nature of these heroines, 
Gina read a synopsis of The Wizard of Oz movie from 
the Marin Independent journal: "A girl leaves home, 
kills the first person she sees, and teams up with three 
complete strangers to kill again." 

Characters, especially in a dream landscape, can- 
not be separated out and must all be seen as aspects 
of the dreamer's (Alice's) character. The men in 
these books, such as the White Knight, tend to be "pa- 
thetic yet powerful"; there are no cute little boys, just 
aged male figures or "hybrids." These two little girls 
at the heart of mythopoeic quest narratives rescue 
themselves, much as Frankenstein's creature figures 
out the world by reading books and alienating people 
("the academic life," commented Barreca). 

Barreca also discussed the differences in the 
books: Alice woke up from a dream while Dorothy's 
world has simply moved on without her; Dorothy is 
humble, Alice arrogant; Oz is futuristic rather than 
nostalgic; Alice falls down and in, Dorothy flies up 
and out; Alice varies physically, while the only thing 
Dorothy changes is her shoes ("my kind of girl!" - 
GB); Dorothy's motivation is not exploration, but re- 
turn. "Alice and Dorothy, more heroes than heroines, 
are not passive creatures enacting their own survival: 
they both go places to make trouble, and refuse to 
drown in lakes of their own tears." 

Much of the audience was dissolving in tears — of 
laughter — by the end of Professor Barreca's talk. 

After a short break, Catherine Robson (below), 
University of California at Davis Professor of Eng- 
lish and author of Men in Wonderland: The Lost Girl- 
hood of the Victorian Gentleman {KL 67:26), presented 
"Reciting Alice: What Is the Use of a Book Without 
Poems?". Through much of history, including the 
last few centuries, schoolchildren have been charged 
with memorizing and reciting poems, often "uplift- 
ing" ones filled with moral 
pieties, such as those of Isaac 
Watts so "transgressively re- 
vised" by Carroll. Carroll, in 
his deft mocking of Watts, re- 
tains the form but mangles the 
contents. Watts' Divine Songs 
for Children, the first text for 
memorization, intended not 
just as a pedagogical exercise but as a means to ward 
off temptations caused by an idle mind, retained a 
hold on middle- and upper-class nursery life from 
1715 to at least 1850. Children were exposed to it and 
asked to recite poems even before learning to read. 




14 



Watts' poems were so much a part of the age that 
not only do satires appear in Carroll, but the "Busy 
Bee" poem is also referred to in Dickens' The Old 
Curiosity Shop, Emily Dickinson's poem "Sic Transit," 
and at least three burlesques in Punch (one starting 
"How doth the dizzy Disraeli..."). Carroll's satires, of 
course, have far outlasted the originals. 

Robson reinvigorated the term prosimetrum, the 
"fabulous monster" that is a work in both prose and 
verse. Poetry has often been part of the novel, not 
just in epigraphs or valedictory verses, but employed 
within a story's context for a "dizzying variety of rea- 
sons." These might include interpolated poems, versi- 
fied interludes, riddles, spells, prophecy, original or 
nonce compositions by characters, and so on. But 
here Robson analyzes the formal recitation of a poem 
by a character, which occurs thrice in both Wonder- 
land and Looking-Glass (the other poems arise under 
various other pretexts). 

There is an interweaving of the three recited 
poems in Wonderland: as Alice admits to the Caterpil- 
lar that she has misrecited "Busy Bee," it "causes the 
obdurate grub to demand she recite 'You Are Old, 
Father William.'" In reporting her failure to recite 
"Father William" to the Gryphon, she is made to re- 
cite "'Tis the voice of the Lobster" and mangles it, a 
further confirmation of the failure of her mind under 
the circumstances. 

Robson also traced the history of the prosime- 
trum, particularly in nineteenth-century novels such 
as those by Sir Walter Scott. Is it any wonder, she in- 
quired, that when Edison chose the first sound in 
history to be recorded, he selected what was most 
accessible to him, the oft-recited "Mary Had a Little 
Lamb"? 

We then had a break to view "The Curious World 
of Lewis Carroll," an exhibit of items from the G. 
Edward and Margaret Elizabeth Cassady Collection, 
donated to USC in 2000 by alumnus George Cassady 
(their son) and his companion, Linda Parker. The 
Collection, begun in the same year with about a hun- 
dred books and a few ephemera, has been added to 
since then by Dr. Cassady and Ms. Parker and now con- 
tains more than a thousand items. In the main public 
room were items showing the continued worldwide 
fascination with Carroll, in cases and signage match- 
ing the dark red of the first edition of Wonderland. 
Two large kiosks presented some of Carroll's games 
and puzzles, and another a montage of scenes from 
Alice films. Most of the articles on display were aimed 
at the general public, but one, a set of etchings com- 
missioned by Ms. Parker from Alp Ozberker, was new 
to this writer. 

However, George had kindly set aside for us in an 
upstairs room some of the more esoteric items, such 
as the storyboard from the Paramount movie {KL 
59:4), signed by many involved in the film, including 



Dmitri Tiomkin and Gary Cooper; Alice's own copies 
of books, recently purchased from the Faletta collec- 
tion (p. 34); presentation copies inscribed to Ellen 
Terry and Xie Kitchen; and a book sculpture by Glo- 
ria Helfgott. Outside the library was a case of objects 
entered into the USC Wonderland Award student 
contest last year (mixed media, CD-ROMs, books, and 
so on — see KL 75:35; this year's contest is under way). 
This award, too, is underwritten by the magnanimous 
Linda Parker. 

Simultaneously, Jeffrey Eger gave a short presen- 
tation about his book Dodgson at Auction 1893-1999? 
The work traces the lives of 3,000 individual vol- 
umes — generally autograph and inscribed material, 
including the original Under Ground manuscript — 
through the hands of dealers and collectors, gleaned 
from compilations of auction records. (The cata- 
logues from which this work was constructed were all 
purchased by Cassady and are now also in the USC 
Collection.) Five separate indexes inform this newly 
minted form of bibliography. Jeffrey's humorous pre- 
sentation ("Nothing is more driven than a collector 
in heat") was most edifying. 

Robert Polhemus (right). Professor of English 
and erstwhile Chair of the 
English Department at Stan- 
ford, author of Comic Faith: The 
Great Tradition from Austen to 
foyce (a chapter of which is de- 
voted to Looking-Glass) among 
many others, has addressed 
our Society once before, in 
San Francisco in the spring 
of 1984. Here, "Lewis Carroll and the Idolatry of the 
Child" looked at Carroll's photography and ficfion as 
means for "exploring, expressing, and satisfying the 
longing for secular faith." 

Religious desire and concerns were of para- 
mount importance to our Mr. Dodgson. The idolatr)' 
of a girl-child in image and word can be seen as a holy 
fetish: the desire for aesthetic representation and its 
prohibition due to heterodoxic consequences. The 
monotheistic godhead is forbidden to be portrayed by 
Abrahamic religions, a protection against diffusion of 
divinity into objects. Contrasting this is the deification 
of forms of beauty. Orthodoxy needs to preserve its 
superiority by being beyond the realm of the senses, 
yet there is an irrepressible human need to look upon 
the sacred, to find evidence of eternal life. 

Polhemus discoursed on the ineluctable erotici- 
zation of images, by their nature sensual. Much Bibli- 
cal imagery, from the Renaissance through the Pre- 
Raphaelites, enjoyed a certain erotic enchantment, as 
Dodgson 's glorification of holy innocence ultimately 
gave ammunition to accusations of pedophilic exploi- 
tafion. 




15 



Polhemus revealed the apotheosis of the conflict, 
the making of the golden calf, Aaron's attempt as an 
artist to keep religion alive. The patriarch's original 
act, and subsequent depictions of it, are "sensuous 
valorizations merging holy and profane pleasure." 
Idolatry leads to sensuousness, orgiastic behavior, vio- 
lence; the golden calf was finally liquefied and drunk, 
internalized. 

Aestheticizing of children pioneered a new 
form of graven images, seemingly of divine origin. 
Dodgson's art had a "messianic streak in how he wor- 
shipped fresh, unspoiled beauty." 

Another focal point of Polhemus' discussion was 
Bernini's sculpture "The Ecstasy of Saint Theresa" 
with the angel holding a flame-tipped arrow as so 
vividly described in her spiritual autobiography. Pol- 
hemus compared this image to Carroll's passage in 
Chapter 19 of Sylvie and Bruno Concluded, when the 
narrator first hears Sylvie 's voice in song and speaks of 
a piercing pain when beholding unearthly beauty. 

Like Aaron, Dodgson, High Priest of the Victo- 
rian Cult of the Child, found his faithful religious self 
being endangered by his own images, such as that of 
Alice as "The Beggar Maid" of Tennyson's eponymous 
poem. Polhemus suggested that the reason Dodgson 
gave up photography may have been his realization 
that these photographs were a form of idolatry. 

That Professor Polhemus was treading close to 
blasphemy seemed to be confirmed by the uncanny 
timing of room lights mysteriously turning on and 
off, and voices from above. 

The Huntington of the Snark 

Saturday's venue was the spectacular Huntington Li- 
brary, Art Collection, and Botanical Garden in nearby 
San Marino, founded in 1919 by Henry E. Hunting- 
ton on his 207-acre estate, 120 of which now encom- 
pass the breathtaking gardens. His art collection, one 
of the most comprehensive in this country of eigh- 
teenth- and nineteenth-century art, features Gains- 
borough's The Blue Boy and his eternal companion. 
Sir Thomas Lawrence's Pinkie. The research library 
holds six million items of "Anglo-American civiliza- 
tion," including the Ellesmere manuscript of Canter- 
bury Tales, a Gutenberg Bible on vellum, the double- 
elephant folio of Birds of America, and significant early 
editions of Shakespeare. 

To start off our gathering on April Fools' Day, 
we were treated to a comedy skit, "Saint Peter inter- 
views C. L. Dodgson," wherein Jim Kincaid portrayed 
Saint Peter as an irascible, whiny, self-doubting, foul- 
mouthed Brooklynese carny who keeps addressing a 
bemused "Mr. Dodhead" or "Mr. Dodhill" (imperson- 
ated by Gina Barreca) . A case of mistaken identity was 
the premise of the skit, wherein Pocahontas was run- 
ning things in Heaven in His absence. A fine farce, 
indeed. 




More soberly, Diane Wag- 
goner (left), Assistant Curator 
of the department of photo- 
graphs of the National Gallery 
of Art in Washington, spoke 
on "Little Men: Lewis Carroll's 
Photographs of Boys." Begin- 
ning with an analysis of "Hi- 
awatha's Photographing" as "a 
backwards metamorphosis of adult masculinity," she 
discussed the "myth of Dodgson's attitude to young 
males." In fact, some 20 to 25 percent of his child 
photographs are of boys, most often the sons of adult 
friends or brothers of female sitters. For example, he 
photographed Harry Liddell before getting his now fa- 
mous sisters to sit for him. 

Much of her fascinating talk involved a series 
of photographs of schoolboys Dodgson took at the 
Twyford School in 1859 (below), in the company of 
Reginald Southey. Waggoner first put the pictures in 
the context of education at the time, particularly the 
changing definitions of masculinity exemplified in 
Dr. Thomas Arnold's reforms at Rugby, which Dodg- 
son also had attended, a world preserved forever in 
Thomas Hughes' Tom Brown's Schooldays. Arnold em- 
phasized the development of manliness, character- 
ized by discipline, self-reliance, and moral strength of 
character, in the school's pupils. 

Visits to Twyford, whose student body included 
Harry Liddell and Edwin Dodgson, and whose head- 
master was George Kitchin, Xie's father, began for 
Dodgson in December 1857. Waggoner "compared 
and contrasted" Dodgson's photographs of groups of 
girls and groups of boys.'' The boys' postures and fa- 
cial expressions reflected institutional relationships, 
not familial poses. Her ability to "read" photographs 
was remarkable, revealing for us the representation 
of student-master relationships and the consciously 
"manly" and public postures of the schoolboys as they 
posed for Dodgson's camera. Dodgson's photographs 
of girls reveal a world more private and personal, rev- 
eling in childhood; boys were on their way to man- 




16 




hood. This talk was part of a longer chapter of a book 
currently in progress for publication. 

Robin Lakoff (below), Professor of Linguistics at 
the University of California at Berkeley, spoke next, 
to "Who Wrote Sylvie and 
Bruno (and Why Did He Write 
It?)." Her initial response 
to the books she described 
as "visceral, and very nega- 
tive." Beginning with some 
statistics from Amazon.com 
("from whence all scholar- 
ship emerges these days") in 
an attempt to quantify her re- 
sponse, she compared complexity and readability in- 
dices to those of the Alice books, reinforcing how dif- 
ferent they are in style as well as content. Her thesis 
was that these heavy-handed books involving death, 
religion, romance, and politics are "not entirely suit- 
able for children" and therefore that the authorship 
attributed to "Lewis Carroll" was a marketing ploy, 
and the true, "aleithonymic" author was C. L. Dodg- 
son, "boring Oxford don." 

Lakoff looked deeper at the differences: Alice 
was impolitic, unkind to animals; a normal, feisty 
seven-year-old "bad girl," the "old" Martha Stewart. 
Sylvie was saccharinely sweet, nice, cheerful, the 
"new" Martha Stewart. Alice is growing up; Sylvie is 
getting younger throughout. We see adult figures 
through Alice's eyes; Sylvie is seen from an adult per- 
spective. Alice is deeply subversive to the monarchy, 
justice system, etiquette, and language; Sylvie unques- 
tioning and accepting of values of religion, morality, 
and logic. 

Professor Lakoff confessed to being "scared" by 
Sylvie and Bruno, calling it "Christian kitsch" like that 
produced by the Nazis. Wonderland she actually liked: 
obviously written by one who knew children, the book 
was first vetted by them, and has a protofeminist post- 
modern heroine. 

Mr. Dodgson was known to be ambivalent about 
education for girls, was politically conservative and a 
monarchist, and hence the most likely author of this 
"antiplagiarism." In the twenty-year hiatus between 
the books, his world-view had changed; he was older 
and sadder — "Lewis Carroll" had ceased to exist. 

After lunch, we were given a view of some of the 
Huntington Library's Carroll collection, which in- 
cluded what Selwyn Goodacre calls "the most perfect 
of the red-cloth 1865 Alices," a copy once belonging 
to the brothers Dalziel, which contains a letter from 
Tenniel complaining of the quality of the printing; 
an 1897 letter to E. Gertrude Thompson with a lovely 
trompe I'oeil drawing (reproduced in XL 59:4); and 
Dodgson 's own annotations to Symbolic Logic. 

Next Carol Mavor (above right), professor of art 
history at the University of North Carolina at Chapel 




Hill and author of Pleasures 
Taken: Performances of Sexual- 
ity and Loss in Victorian Photo- 
graphs and other texts, gave a 
lively address, "For-getting to 
Eat: Alice's Mouthing Meton- 
ymy.""' Mavor's areas of inter- 
^t est include photography, and 
theories of sexuality, boyhood, 
girlhood, and adolescence. 

After another showing of the Hepworth scene in 
which Alice and the carrot-associated Rabbit move 
through a vaginal tunnel (the filmmaker's wife por- 
trays the White Rabbit, she noted), Mavor began her 
talk with a discourse on Dodgson 's sparse, self-deny- 
ing eating habits. The appetites of children filled him 
with alarm, and she quoted several letters to that ef- 
fect. The title of her talk came from the well-known 
"lessons in forgetting" letter to Agnes Hull,*' and her 
theme involved the "hedonistic emphasis on food and 
the sensuality in forgetting, that is, not devouring it." 
Mavor spoke to the many examples in the books 
of "anorectic hedonism," going through the motions 
of eating, yet never consuming food: from Alice pre- 
tending to be a hungry hyena (a bone "feeds hun- 
ger of a different order," in that one only nibbles and 
bites it) through the empty jar of marmalade, nonex- 
istent wine, inedible treacle, "jam yesterday," the con- 
sequences of being introduced to your dinner, the 
bite out of the teacup ("a metonymic surface of de- 
sire and displacement"), and the unconsumed tarts 
at the trial. Her talk was well illustrated with photo- 
graphs, often by Dodgson, but including such objects 
as Meret Oppenheim's fur-covered cup, saucer, and 
spoon. Is the chiasmus of "I see what I eat" here liter- 
ally the same as "I eat what I see"? 

Cats, she declared, are a metonymy for remem- 
brance, and the "anorectic hedonism" also applies to 
forgetting, a hole in memory. Death is not a loss of 
the future so much as a loss of the past; photography 
is a form of immortality. 

Mavor also talked to Carroll's many letters about 
licking and kissing (again, activities of the mouth that 
involve no nourishment) and the innate classism of 
the luxury of being able not to eat. Her talk left us, er, 
hungry for more. 

Speaking from in front of an Audubon flamingo, 
the redoubtable Selwyn Goodacre (below) delivered 
"Towards an Analytical Commentary on Alice's Ad- 
ventures" in his inimitably and 
inevitably jocund manner. He 
first came to Alice's defense, as 
several of the previous speak- 
ers had called her "rude" — 
he prefers the term "feisty." 
Goodacre spoke to Wonder- 
land as a pioneering work of 




17 



children's literature for a dozen different reasons [KL 
58:7, also quoted in All Things Alice] , spoke of Carroll's 
merchandizing genius, and referred somehow to 
something called Worzel Gummidge. 

Goodacre said that although a number of fine 
annotations are available (Martin Gardner's, James 
Kincaid's, Richard Kelly's, Peter Heath's, and the 
"schoolbook" ones) to tell us what cucumber frames 
are, what he proposes is an almost word-by-word tex- 
tual exegesis. To demonstrate, he spent a good deal 
of time on just the first sentence, mentioning the 
"country gentleman's garb" of the White Rabbit, the 
narrator's immediate empathy with the heroine, the 
poetry of the phrase "sleepy and stupid," the fact that 
only at age seven does one have the proper thickness 
of fingernail to make a daisy chain, and the like. To 
get through the rest of the book in his alloted time, 
he reluctantly picked up the pace a bit. 

Goodacre spoke much of a muchness, includ- 
ing Alice's slow fall, with familiar items comforting 
to school-age readers; the overheard conversation 
involving Bill on the roof as "an apotheosis of punc- 
tuation skills"; the caterpillar as university lecturer in- 
terrogating a student; the accuracy of a dialogue be- 
tween a middle-class Victorian child and a gardener; 
and the three characters at the tea party sitting at 
the head like Oxford dons at table. He noted how 
the Duchess's reappearance reassures child readers; 
that the impact of a mythical monster such as a Gry- 
phon is softened by having him asleep; and how the 
last chapter can be viewed as attending a theatrical 
presentation. And how, he inquired, did the Gryphon 
manage to go to school (the same one, we are told, as 
the Mock Turtle) under ihe^ sea? 

The eight speakers then sat at a large table and 
became a panel. 

The first question, "Would Lewis Carroll like 
you?" was answered by Gina with an image of him 
screaming and running away from "loud-mouthed 
women." The second question was "What does it tell 
us about twenty-first-century academia that five of the 
eight speakers quoted Alice's remark about Mabel's 
'poky little house'?", initiating a discussion of classism 
and how concerns for our current "political correct- 
ness" override legitimate nineteenth-century atti- 
tudes. Other discussion revolved around unanswered 
questions, whether Sylvie and Bruno was Dodgson's 
attempt to recompense society and convention for 
the damage done them with the Alice books, what 
the similarly subversive media of today might be, and, 
inevitably, a long, heated discussion of the issue of 
Dodgson's sexuality, climaxing with a comment on 
the relation between our interest in the work of an 
artist and his life: "It's like enjoying pate and insisting 
on being introduced to the duck." 

We then climbed aboard various vehicles to find 
our way to an exhibition at the Caracola Gallery, by 



Cuban artist Victor Huerta, of Alice paintings "contex- 
tualized within the demise of the Cuban revolution." 
The paintings (below), replete with nudity and politi- 
cal suggestiveness, were skillful if unorthodox render- 
ings.' We thanked gallery owner Dermot Bagley for 
his hospitality and walked up the alley to Barbara's at 
the Brewery for a festive valedictory dinner. 




• Child Loving: The Erotic Child and Victorian Culture 
(Routledge, 1992); Annoying the Victorians (Routledge, 
1995) 

^ ginabarreca.com 

^ Dodgson at Auction 1893-1999, compiled by David 
Carlson and Jeffrey Eger, forewords by Charlie Lovett 
and Jay Dillon. Obtainable from the publisher, D & D 
Galleries, Box 8413, Somerville, NJ 08876; dndgalleries. 
com; 908.874-3162; 908.874-5195; carlson@dndgalleries. 
com orjeffrey Eger, 42 Blackberry Lane, Morristown, 
NY 07960; (973) 455-1843; thepen@jeffreyeger.com. 
Hardcover octavo volume bound in red cloth, $75. 
Deluxe limited numbered edition bound in blue cloth 
with a matching slipcase and including an original leaf 
from the first edition of the 1865 Wonderland (obtained 
by deconstructing an 1866 Appleton edition), $225. If 
the leaf includes an illustration, $275. Postage within the 
U.S. is $9. 

^ Many of these can be seen in the Princeton collection at 
libweb2.princeton.edu/rbsc2/portfolio/lcl/index.html. 

^ Metonymy is a rhetorical term, a figure of speech 

consisting of the use of the name of one thing for that 
of another of which it is an attribute, or with which it is 
associated, e.g., "The pen is mightier than the sword," 
or "The White House" when referring to the president 
and his advisors. It is distinctly different from the term 
metaphor. 

6 December 10, 1877 

' Most of the paintings can be seen at www.caracolagallery. 
com/images/VictorHuerta/VictorHuertaGallery/index. 
htm. 



18 



^^ 

EVOLUTION OF A DREAM-CHILD 

IMAGES OF ALICE & CHANGING CONCEPTIONS OF CHILDHOOD 

VICTORIA SEARS 



■^^ 



PARTS I & II 



I. Introduction 

In 1865, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonder- 
land wa.s published with the illustrations of Sir John 
Tenniel. Icons of both illustration and children's 
literature, Tenniel's illustrations are classics and are 
the standard against which all subsequent attempts at 
illustrating the Alice books are held. But if they are 
so revered, why then have scores of artists since tried 
their hand at illustrating the stories? What is it about 
Carroll's vision that has such allure? Perhaps it has 
something to do with our culture's practice of defin- 
ing itself by redefining itself over time, based upon 
cultural icons including fictional characters such as 
Alice. 

After the publication of Carroll's book, Alice 
immediately became the iconic child. There is some- 
thing about the emblematic figure of Alice to which 
we are continuously attracted. Just as childhood is 
central to Western culture, so Alice is to childhood. 
Why has Alice become especially privileged and pow- 
erful among fictional characters? I suggest that the 
character of Alice is reimagined generation after gen- 
eration so as to ensure that our culture always has a 
fictional character around which to define itself: a 
child through whom we can live vicariously, and into 
whom we can channel our fears, dreams, and desires. 
In the following paper, I explore the relationship be- 
tween the evolution, from 1858 to 2000, of visualiza- 
tions of Alice and changing conceptions of childhood 
in Western culture. The visual adaptations I have 
chosen to examine meet two criteria: they are both 
stylistically and historically innovative. The fact that 
these criteria yielded so many cases indicates that the 
theme of Alice has been a key vehicle through which 
to rethink childhood for almost 150 years. 

This continuing fascination with Alice is also 
echoed in changing scholarly and critical reinterpre- 
tations of the character. In the last few decades of the 
twentieth century, much ink was spilled on the sub- 
ject her "true" nature. Citing Nina Auerbach, James 



Victoria Sears, now at Princeton in the second year of a PhD program in 
art history, wrote this as her undergraduate senior thesis from Barnard 
in 2003. We will publish this in its entirety over the next few issues of the 
Knight Letter, this article being the first two of six sections. 



Kincaid, author of the provocative Child-Loving: The 
Erotic Child &' Victorian Culture, explains that Alice's 
sexuality lies in her resistance to growing up.' She is 
desirable because "she vacates the position of the true 
child. ... and becomes the false child, the child who 
betrays growing up.'"' She lingers in this liminal state 
because Carroll refuses to allow her to mature, just as 
Dodgson refuses to acknowledge the maturation of 
Alice Liddell. Dodgson's reluctance to let go of his 
child friend is textually and visually conveyed in Al- 
ice's resistance to her physical growth in Wonderland, 
and in her ultimate loss of control over it.^ Perhaps 
this state of uncertainty and oscillation is illustrative 
of the difficulty in assigning Alice unequivocally to a 
particular category. Nina Auerbach, author of "Fall- 
ing Alice, Fallen Women, and Victorian Dream Chil- 
dren," questions whether it is even possible to create 
a unified vision of Alice. She suggests that Alice is an 
"amalgam of purity and subversive power... a nurs- 
ery avatar of a grand Pre-Raphaelite icon: the fallen 
woman, scandalous and blessed." These girls possess 
"power and erotic energy within a dream of purity." ^ 
I suggest that it was the very conception of the ideal 
child that both created and was created by an atmo- 
sphere saturated with simultaneously sentimental and 
sexualized images of young girls. 

The 1963 publication of Philippe Aiies' seminal 
work Centuries of Childhood ma.rked the beginnings 
of historians' quest to discover and trace the devel- 
opment and changing nature of childhood and the 
ways in which people perceived it. His main objective 
was to outline the emergence in the nineteenth cen- 
tury of a sentiment de Venfance, "an ambiguous phrase 
which conveyed both an awareness of childhood and 
a feeling for it.""" But although childhood changes 
over time and emerged as a discernible concept only 
as recently as the nineteenth century, to what extent 
does childhood actually reveal something about the 
time and place in which it exists? Is "childhood" a 
universal, timeless phase of life characterized by cer- 
tain constant truths? Or is it a highly malleable social 
construct? To what extent are artistic representations 
of children shaped by contemporaneous conceptions 
of childhood? 



19 



II. The Victorian Era 

Toward the end of the eighteenth century, a new no- 
tion of childhood emerged that suggested children 
were not merely undeveloped adults, but in fact, had 
value in their own right.'' In the early nineteenth cen- 
tury, a variety of social changes and ideological shifts 
led to the occupation by children of a childlike place 
in society. However, it was not until the Evangelical 
movement, Romanticism, and widespread industrial- 
ization swept Europe that children began to acquire 
a collective identity. 

Julia Briggs attributes the proliferation of chil- 
dren's literature in part to the Evangelicalism. As the 
movement attempted to reach children of the lowest 
classes and children's books preaching morality, good 
values, and altruism were published, a "sentimental 
conviction of the child's innate virtue gradually came 
to replace the earlier emphasis on original sin."' 
While the Evangelical movement is most often cited 
as contributing to the development of children's lit- 
erature, I propose that this increased output of age- 
specific literature also helped mold childhood into a 
socially and culturally distinct category. 

Another factor in the development of childhood 
was an increasing interest in "ideas more overtly com- 
patible with Romanticism's idealization" of child- 
hood.*^ Romantics such as Wordsworth and Coleridge 
viewed childhood as innocent, pure, and character- 
ized by a "vitality of the imagination as it instinctively 
recognized its affinities with the natural world. "^ 
Children were seen as having a more profound rela- 
tionship with the natural world, as possessing percep- 
tual and imaginative capabilities that were lost upon 
reaching adulthood. Citing literary historian David 
Grylls, Heywood describes the Romantic child as hav- 
ing "deeper wisdom, finer aesthetic sensitivity, and [a 
deeper] awareness of enduring moral truths."'" This 
formulation of childhood as a lost realm essential to 
the formation of, but separate from adulthood con- 
tributed to the singularity of the child's identity. 

While Romanticism disseminated the idea of 
childhood as pure and intrinsically connected to na- 
ture, the industrialization of the countryside further 
contributed to the ideal of the innocent, moral child. 
Romanticism was predicated upon a recovery of Eng- 
land's rural, idyllic past, a past industrialization was 
swiftly destroying. Accompanying the rise of industry 
was the reality of the abused, working-class female 
child: "The abused girl constituted . . . the central hor- 
ror ... largely because she is depicted as the absolute 
inverse of the ideal little girl."" She stood in striking 
contrast to her innocent, romanticized counterpart. 
The wretched, laboring girl simultaneously created 
and revealed the Victorian imperative to rescue their 
children and, with Romanticism and Evangelicalism 
as their models, to construct an ideal child. 



Thus, ideal childhood did not suddenly appear in 
the Victorian era: it resulted from the circumstances 
outlined above, as well as from Victorian ideologies 
that both contributed to and were consequences of 
the new conception of ideal childhood, at the heart 
of which was the girl-child. Perhaps no other era 
has been so often analyzed, interpreted, and rein- 
terpreted in terms of its love affair with the female 
child — a singularly Victorian construct known as 
the Cult of the Child. I wish to divide this extremely 
complex and often paradoxical construction into two 
major components: the girl, as ideal and treasured by 
society as a whole, and the so-called "lost girlhood of 
Victorian gentlemen." 

The Victorians possessed a cultish love for young 
girls, viewing children as innocent, sexually pure, 
moral, and spiritual. However, beneath her immacu- 
late fagade, the Victorian girl was in fact quite com- 
plex and problematic. Innocence and an appear- 
ance of purity simultaneously sustained the ideal of 
the pre-sexual child and rendered the female child 
highly, albeit implicitly, sexualized; her latent sexu- 
ality and appearance of purity made her desirable. 
The sexual nature of the child was "the epitome of 
innocent beauty which awakens longing without it- 
self demanding sexual satisfaction."'^ Because ex- 
plicit childhood sexuality was taboo, forbidden adult 
male sexual desires were "subconsciously redirected 
towards children, because in the context of a pre- 
sexual child they [seemed] safe, unchallenging, and 
hardly sexual at all."''^ On the surface, the Child as 
a Victorian symbol carried with it all sorts of power- 
ful meanings: beauty, purity, morality, and sensuality, 
eroticism, sexuality. In the female child, these seem- 
ingly contradictory qualities come together in a syn- 
thesis of all that was desirable and desired during the 
Victorian era. 

Also contributing to the shape of Victorian child- 
hood was the attraction felt by men toward young 
girls, an attraction which Catherine Robson attributes 
to the "male myth of feminized origin."''' As a symbol 
of an idyllic and happy childhood, the young girl be- 
came a provider of male security, yet with an implicit 
eroticism. The girl's age and gender, contrasting with 
those of her male admirer, focused this complex re- 
lationship on the body, thus implicitly eroticizing 
the child. U. C. Knoepflmacher attributes the attrac- 
tion to little girls by Victorian men such as Dodgson 
to the male's sense of a missed childhood — a result 
of the removal of boys from the home to school at a 
very young age.''' Emotional, creative, and sentimen- 
tal Victorian gentlemen desired to recover their lost 
childhood by appropriating the body of the young 
girl and all it implied. Thus, Victorian childhood was 
coded as explicitly feminine and highly desirable. 

The Cult of the Child and the "male myth of 
feminized origin" relate directly to Dodgson and his 



20 



photographs of Ahce Liddell, the first visuahzations 
of Alice. While it is important to note that he was by 
no means alone in his attraction to young girls — in 
fact, it was rather common and not at all suspect — 
his photographs do underscore the powerful allure 
young girls held for him. Kincaid suggests that Carroll 
wished to capture in his photographs the child before 
she vanished, before she grew up"^ — a theme that res- 
onates quite explicidy in the illustrations of Wonder- 
land. This desire to encapsulate childhood in visual 
form also implies that Dodgson felt nostalgia for the 
conditions of feminine childhood in which he never 
participated. Robson proposes that photography was 
the perfect outlet for his desires. His method was the 
license offered by "self-effacement," his absence from 
the photograph itself. This invisibility allowed him to 
capture his erotically suggestive relationship with his 
young child friends without complicating it with his 
presence." But because of the nature of the medium, 
he was inherently present: the very act of framing was 
part and parcel of his "sensual exploration of child- 
hood and emergent sexuality," which, while suspect 
today, was normative and intrinsic to the Victorian 
male artist.'^ 

Dodgson 's photographs of Alice Liddell in proper, 
girlish dress indeed convey a sense of youthful inno- 
cence. For example, in a photograph from 1859, Alice 
wears a fussy, complicated, and constricting dress typi- 
cal of affluent Victorian girls. The flowered garland 
in her hair and her demure smile give her a delicate, 
doll-like quality, while the circular framing of the pho- 
tograph renders both the subject and the content 
sentimental and ornamental. In another photograph 

from that year, Alice 
poses coyly in an 
ivy-draped corner) . 
Again, she wears a 
ruffled white dress 
and frilly white 
socks, both of which 
suggest innocence 
and purity. The 
photograph 's staged 
quality is obvious, 
and reinforces the 





idea of the Victorian girl as constructed object of sen- 
timent and desire. Dodgson took another photograph 
of Alice in that same corner, yet in this one she wears 
the costume of a beggar girl, a costume that removes 
her from the realm of proper Victorian childhood 
and into that of fantasy and role-playing. 

Photographs such as these that construct AHce 
as the Other reveal the ambiguity and multivalence 
of the Victorian child. Her face and body are child- 
like, but her torn clothing, confrontational gaze, and 
provocative gesture are suggestive of the latent sexu- 
ality that characterized Victorian perceptions of child- 
hood.''^ Dodgson's photographs juxtapose the ethe- 
real, natural beauty of children with proper Victorian 
childhood and the formal constraints of the medium. 
The photographs are structured around this tension 
between the physical reality of the children portrayed 
and the styled artifice of the image itself. Oppositions 
between the natural and the artificial, the erotic and 
the repressed, and interiorized and staged theatricality 
are all invoked. Thus, he weaves form and content into 
a seamless whole that is implicitly erotic and visually 
haunting. The power of Carroll's creations lay in his 
management, through photography, of the Victorian 
girl's paradoxical nature, and in his brilliant synthesis 
of the innocently nostalgic and the implicitly erotic. 

Jackie Wullschlager discusses these seemingly 
paradoxical components of the Victorian ideal: the 
innocent. Romantic child who was connected to na- 
ture, and the sexual child toward whom the desires of 
Victorian men were directed. While I suggested that 
Dodgson both revealed and concealed his desires 
through photographs of girls, I also believe that it was 
through the writing of children's fantasy novels that 
such desires could be unleashed yet channeled in a 
socially acceptable manner.'^" One result, and perhaps 
cause as well, of the emergence of a conception of a 
distinct childhood was the emergence of illustrated 
children's books as a legitimate form of literature. 
Illustration during this period was of especially high 
quality, and Sir John Tenniel's illustrations for Car- 
roll's books are the best known. '^' 

The first illustrations for the Alice books, how- 
ever, were drawn by Carroll himself. Before the first 
book was published, he prepared a hand-lettered and 
illustrated manuscript of the stories for Alice Liddell. 
Carroll's drawings were until recently (and by Car- 
roll himself) typically viewed as flawed and childish. 
While I acknowledge that they do not reach the level 
of Tenniel's technical and artistic competency, I pro- 
pose that we view them as interesting and imagina- 
tive drawings that both influenced Tenniel and have 
merit in their own right. His Alice is not so much an 
explicitly Victorian idealized child as she is an allu- 
sion to a slightly earlier period of romanticism and 
raw passion. As Rodney Engen explains, Carroll's 
Alice evokes an ideal Pre-Raphaelite girl-child with 



21 










tp0 jPPB^^H 


i^'a^^^ 


^'jnl 



her "long, frizzy tresses and haunting eyes" (cf. 
Juliet,]ohn William Waterhouse, 1898, detail, above 
right). 22 Yet unlike so many images of Pre-Raphaelite 
and Victorian females, this Alice is not sexualized, but 
rather predominantly childlike and innocent. 

Carroll thought his drawings childish and felt 
he was not competent enough to illustrate the 
published Alice. Twenty years later, Kate Greenaway 
became famous for her stylistically childlike drawings 
of an idyllic, nostalgic childhood. The very qualities 
that made Carroll see his drawings as inadequate, 
Greenaway sought intentionally and with great 
success. They became the hallmark of her well-known 
and recognizable style. Greenaway's drawings are 
like vivid memories: they evoke and long for a lost 
childhood of the past. When Dodgson chose an artist 
to illustrate the published edition in 1865, he chose Sir 
John Tenniel, who drew as he would draw for an adult 
audience: illustrations with none of the endearing 
childlike qualities of Greenaway or Carroll. 

Carroll provided almost no description of Alice's 
physical characteristics, and thus Tenniel's visualization 
of Alice was left to his imagination and to anything 
he could gather from Carroll's illustrations. Carroll 
implies only that Alice "had long, straight hair, shiny 
shoes, a skirt, small hands, and bright eyes," and given 
such details, she "becomes a nondescript Everygirl."-'^ 

It is in Tenniel's illustrations that Alice becomes 
an embodiment of the Victorian child, simultaneously 
innocent and mature. While Carroll's drawings did 
influence those of Tenniel, mostly in terms of poses 
and gestures, Tenniel's Alice is a completely different 
girl. Tenniel's Alice, with her "china-doll features," is 
stiffer, more enigmatic, and unlike Carroll's childlike 
girl, embodies the child-adult split that characterized 
the Victorian ideal of childhood. According to Engen, 
the appearance and expressions of Tenniel's Alice are 




"well-suited to her fits 

of very adult petulance 

and outraged anger as 

well as the expressions 

of childish innocence 

which dominate the 

story. "24 His Alice is 

often wooden and 

stoic; she lacks vitality 

and seems detached 

from the characters 

around her. She is 

"unsentimental and minute, with some of the effect 

of a photograph taken for factual record. "2-"' Thus it 

is not surprising that, like wealthy girls in Victorian 

photographs, Alice exemplifies the conventions of 

proper girlhood. The Alice of Through the Looking- 

Glass, with her long blonde hair, black boots, and 

black hat with feather, resembles, for instance, the 

eldest daughter in a photograph of the daughters of 

the Fourth Marquess of Bath (above). 

Another influence on Tenniel's Alice was Sir 
John Everett Millais' paintings of children. Tenniel's 
illustration of Alice seated on the train is an obvious 
descendant of Millais' My First Sermon (opposite, 
left) . They share the same hat, boots, fur muff, and 
striped stockings. Both girls have a sullen, childlike 
countenance. Tenniel's Alice also embodies the dual 
nature of the Victorian girl-child, lost in a strange, adult 
world, "caught in the liminal moment between herself 
as a physical body and the adult's requirement that she 
conform herself to the ideological identity given to 
her."2*' Carroll's girl-child is forever curious about her 
surroundings, and wavers between remaining a child 
and progressing to adulthood. These visualizations 
of Alice, in terms of both themselves and their 
relationship with contemporary images of children, 



22 




embody the paradoxical nature and multidimension- 
ality of the Victorian conception of the ideal child. 

' James Kincaid, Child-Loving .The Erotic Child & Victorian 

Culture (New York: Routledge, 1992), 290. 
^ Kincaid, Child-Loving, 289. 
^ Jacqueline Labbe, '"Still She Haunts Me, Phantomwise': 

Gendering Alice," The Carrollian 3 (Spring 1999): 28. 
"* Nina Auerbach, "Falling Alice, Fallen Women, and 

Victorian Dream Children," in Soaring with the Dodo, 

edited by Edward Guiliano (Richmond: University of 

Virginia Press, 1982): 47. 
^ Colin Heywood, A History of Childhood (Cambridge: Polity 

Press, 2001), 19. 
^ Heywood, History of Childhood, 24. 
' Julia Briggs, "The Emergence of Form: 1850-1890," in 

Children's Literature: An Illustrated History, edited by Peter 

Hunt (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995), 130. 
^ Catherine Robson, Men in Wonderland: The Lost Girlhood 

of Victorian Gentlemen, (Princeton: Princeton University 

Press, 2001), 7. 
^ Briggs, "The Emergence of Form," 136. 
^^ Heywood, History of Childhood, 24. 
'' Robson, Men in Wonderland, 51. 
'^ Jackie Wullschlager, Inventing Wonderland (New York: The 

Free Press, 1995), 23. 
1-^ Ibid., 23-24. 



^^ Robson, Men in Wonderland, 3. 

^^ U.C. Knoepflmacher, Ventures into Childland: Victorians, 

Fairy Tales, and Femininity (Chicago: University of Chicago 

Press, 1998), 11. 
^^ Kincaid, Child-Loving, 227. 
^^ Robson, Men in Wonderland, 144. 
^^ Karoline Leach, In the Shadow of the Dreamchild (London: 

Peter Owen Publishers, 1999), 67. 
^^ Anne Higonnet, Pictures of Innocence: The History and Crisis 

of Ideal Childhood (London: Thames and Hudson, 1998), 

123-4. 
20 Wullschlager, Inventing Wonderland, 27. 
^' Briggs, "The Emergence of Form," 163. 
^^ Rodney Engen, Sir John Tenniel: Alice's White Knight 

(Aldershot, Hants, England: Scolar Press, 1991), 76. 
"^^ Richard Kelly, "'If you don't know what a Gryphon is': 

Text and Illustration in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland," 

in Leiuis Carroll, a Celebration, edited by Edward Guiliano 

(New York: C. N. Potter, 1982), 65. 
^^ Engen, Sir John Tenniel, 77. 
^^ Mikiko Chimori, "Shigeru Hatsuyama's Unpublished 

Alice Illustrations: A Comparative Study of Japanese and 

Western Art," The Carrollian 4 (Autumn 1999): 46. 
^^ J. Zornado, Inventing Childhood: Culture, Ideology, and the 

Story of Childhood (New York: Gariand Publishing, 2001), 

112. 



23 









-S^ 
^?*^ 














The Deaneny Ganden 



^i^ 
^?^ 




I do congratulate you on the new 
format for Knight Letter, it is now 
much clearer, and makes the 
whole journal easier to read and 
enjoy. 

I particularly value having the 
bonus of a page of "Contents," 
and the way the reviews at the end 
have been unscrambled — so that 
one can now identify so much 
more easily books (that we may 
need to order) from magazine 
articles, cyberspace, collectibles, 
etc. (which are of interest, but it's 
not vital to buy every item!). I am 
much impressed at how you man- 
age not only to find all this mate- 
rial, but also then to assemble it in 
such a palatable form for publica- 
tion. It is a wonderful service to 
members, and a totally invaluable 
source of information. The Societ- 
ies owe you a big debt. 

I admire the way you are happy 
to include ongoing controversies 
between certain arguing fac- 
tions — Docherty and Leach; the 
"revisionists" and Cohen; and even 
Tufail and Wakeling. We can all sit 
at ringside and enjoy. 



The increased strength in the 
"Leaves from the Deanery Gar- 
den" is a splendid development. 
This makes for great reading — and 
your extended letters of correc- 
tion of errors, and explanation of 
contentious issues can do nothing 
but good. 

A few points, if I may: 

In "What the Archbishop 
Found" (KI. 70:26), Mark Burstein 
discusses the source of "the driest 
thing I know," identified by Roger 
Lancelyn Green as A Short Course 
of History, by H. Le M. Chepmell. 
He rightly says the first edition was 
published in 1848, and the seventh 
in 1859. My own copy is the third 
edition, 1850. It is not a com- 
mon book. To be really pedantic, 
one might add that Lewis Carroll 
slighdy misquotes the original — in 
Chepmell, the sentence starting 
"William's conduct..." is a new 
paragraph; in Alice, there is no new 
paragraph (I am also pedantic! — in 
the Moser edition oi Alice, I rein- 
stated the new paragraph.) 

August Imholtz Jr., in his defini- 
tive account of Latin and Greek 



versions of "Jabberwocky" {KL 
70:5-1 1 ) , discusses Vansittart's Latin 
version as having been composed 
"in a room at Trinity," and says that 
Classics teachers "often had copies 
privately printed and distributed 
to their students as translation 
models." He does not mention that 
Vansittart did indeed do this with 
his Latin version. I discussed this 
version m Jabberwocky, Spring 1975, 
a paper that August omits from 
his bibliography. In this article I 
discussed the variations between 
this 1872 version and the Oxford 
University Press 1881 version. Most 
are minor, but there is one word 
change: "resolvens" is changed to 
"revolvens." I commented then that 
both words make perfect sense. Au- 
gust lists the Latin translation by 
H. D. Watson as appearing in More 
English Rhymes ivith Latin Renderings 
(Oxford, 1937). In fact, that part 
of the title is in brackets, the pri- 
mary title is, rather appropriately, 
Jabberwocky, Etc. 

I much enjoyed the extended 
discussion by Matthew Demakos 
on "The Authentic Wasp" {KL 
72:15-25), and his detailed com- 



24 



merits on our Wasp symposium in 
April 1978. He gives the impres- 
sion that this was a formal "nine- 
member panel discussion." This 
was not quite the case. The talks 
by Denis Crutch, Brian Sibley, Ra- 
phael Shaberman, and myself were 
all prepared beforehand, but the 
discussion was free-ranging, and 
all those who attended were in- 
vited to comment "from the floor" 
as it were. I recorded the entire 
proceedings, and then transcribed 
it from the tapes, which I recall as 
an immensely laborious process. I 
am relieved that Matthew, after his 
extensive further researches, still 
comes to much the same conclu- 
sions as our symposium did. 

There are a few errors in Mark 
Burstein's summary of the Stead- 
man/Carroll connection in his 
article "Read, Aim, Firefly!" {KL 
72:37-38). The series of etchings 
limited to 65 sets (1973) were 
all from Looking-Glass, none of 
them from Wonderland. The 150 
copies of the Snark (1975) had a 
numbered and signed etching of 
"The Beaver and Butcher" loosely 
inserted. The set of six etchings 
from the book are in black and 
white, not "sepia and black," and 
were published by Cliff White of 
Wliite Ink Limited, not Bernard 
Stone (though he may well have 
distributed them). There is some- 
thing of a puzzle over Steadman's 
pictures for the American trade 
editions of The Wasp. The dust 
wrapper on the first edition says 
"Frontispiece after Tenniel with 
two additional black-and-white 
illustrations by Ralph Steadman," 
but no such illustrations are to be 
found. The dust wrapper on the 
second printing, 1978, also says 
"Frontispiece after Tenniel with two 
additional black-and-white illustra- 
tions by Ralph Steadman," but only 
the frontispiece (with the picture in 
reverse, as Mark points out) and one 
extra illustration are to be found. 
The dust wrapper on the third 
printing says it has "Frontispiece 
(after Tenniel) and an additional 
illustration by Ralph Steadman," 



but none are to be found. Possibly 
my copies are faulty, but there is 
no sign of tampering. Mark righdy 
includes My Afier-Dinner Speech, but 
no mention of the booklet pre- 
pared on the occasion of the Cente- 
nary Dinner: Ralph Steadman and the 
Lewis Carroll Connection, by Selwyn 
Goodacre. 

Selwyn Goodacre 
South Derbyshire, UK 

Thank you very much for your kind 
words and vast erudition, Selwyn. If 
you really want to get pedantic about 
the Chepmell quotation, I am forced to 
point out that in the original, "Pope" 
was capitalized; "the English" is fol- 
loiued by a semicolon, not a comma; 
and many of the proper nouns were 
italicized. But since it was an oral 
recitation, rather than a written tran- 
scription, I think we can let it be. 



The new Knight Letter (75) just 
arrived and is smashing; Martin 
Gardner's comments and notes 
alone are above the price of rubies. 

It is so rarely that my memory 
can be trusted, please let me vindi- 
cate it in one small matter 

On p. 22 appears my note: "I 
have a recollection of reading 
in a KL — perhaps in KL 42 — of a 
member's once asking Douglas 
Adams on the fly if his using 42 as 
'the answer' in A Hitchhiker's Guide 
to the Galaxy was inspired by Lewis 
Carroll's interest in the number. 
As I recall, the member received 
a brusque, even disgusted, denial 
from the irritated author" 

You seemed to think it wasn't in 
the Knight Letter, so I went back in 
my time machine to check. 

In Knight Letter 42, under "Car- 
rollian Notes," beneath the head 
"Life, the Universe, &: 42," Michael 
D. Welch writes: "I asked Adams 
when I met him last year if there 
was any connection between his 
use of the number 42 in his book 
and Carroll's use of it. He denied 
it out of hand, glaring at me testily 
as if he was about to shake 



like a wet rat. Yes, he had read 
Carroll when he was but a child, 
but it had no influence on his own 
writing above any other books he 
devoured." 

As disturbing as I find the dis- 
tortions of my memory's lens, I'm 
relieved that the incident wasn't 
"my own invention." 

Thanks for all your good work. 
Gary Brockman 



ISi 

Is Walt Kelly's transvestite Pogo 
(unless it's actually his sister, fly- 
ing blind without her glasses, or a 
grownup niece) playing Alice in 
"Who Stole the Tarts?" ( The Pogo 
Stepmother Goose, Simon & Schuster, 
1954) the only example we have of 
a "humanoid" or animal Alice? Is 
she always illustrated as a human 
child? I suppose that makes sense, 
for the contrast between her and 
the other creatures. Do any read- 
ers know of other non-human 
instances? 

Andrew Ogus 




The following email was received by 
u)ebcontact@lewiscarroll.org: 

Hi! my name is gill and im a huge 
charles lutwidge dodgson fan. i do 
not mean to be finicky but there is 
only one "r" and one "1" in carol. 

just thought i'd point it out but 

i would like to congratulate you on 
the marvelous site !!!!!!! 



25 



Ravings pnom rhe Wmring Desk 



OF ALAN TANNENBAUM 



■^^ 



One of the tasks I have is to organize and arrange the ven- 
ues and speakers for our semi-annual meetings. As long 
as I have been attending LCSNA gatherings (20 years), 
we have always had good meetings, and I don't think 
the previous seven, during my tenure as President have 
been exceptions. We've had some outstanding 
speakers, exhibitions, receptions, and side- 
trips. Back in 2000 when I hosted the Austin 
meeting of the LCSNA, and before I became 
President, I had a little taste of the logistical 
work needed, but I was the local. Then, at the 
end of 2002, when the helm transferred to me 
from the capable hands of Stephanie Lovett, I 
began to appreciate the amount of work these 
meetings entail and had a new respect for the 
work of my predecessors. Fortunately, with 
the help of local members and the staffs at 
the respective institutions, we always succeed 
at having an enjoyable meeting for the many 
people who come to share in our common in- 
terest. 

Since this special issue of the Knight Let- 
ter comes to you with a summary of the past 
two meetings, I have the pleasure of thanking 
a number of speakers and staff in helping to 
make these meetings a success. 

I won't rehash those events, but I will go 
out of my way to thank Heather King and the 
staff of the Iowa State Historical Society for 
helping us arrange the meeting and exhibition of Lewis 
Carroll items in their collection. And to Mary Kline-Misol 
who invited us to Des Moines and not only gave us per- 
sonal tour through her wonderful retrospective, but along 
with her husband truly went above and beyond in arrang- 
ing the evening reception and gala dinner at the Salisbury 
House. They presented the Society with a specially en- 
graved white stone to mark the event. Special thanks also 
go to our speakers: Frankie Morris, the foremost authority 
on Sir John Tenniel; Genevieve Smith for her insights into 
the artistic side of Carroll; David Schaefer for the mini film 
festival (and the untold hours of mastering digital video 
editing to reproduce some effects not seen in 100 years). 



and the panel of collectors: Joel Birenbaum, Mark Burst- 
ein, and August Imholtz. To those members who sent in 
pictures of items from their collections, thank you very 
much. 

The academic conference just concluded in Los An- 
geles, in conjunction with 
our Spring meeting, was only 
possible due of the work of 
Tyson Gaskill and his capable 
staff at use. The two days of 
talks and exhibitions at the 
Doheny and Huntington Li- 
braries was top-notch. And 
special thanks to Dr. George 
Cassady who has been qui- 
etly compiling an outstand- 
ing collection of popular and 
rare Carrolliana that is now 
in the collection of USC. As 
Dr. Cassady explained to me, 
he feels strongly that Carroll 
enthusiasts should be able to 
get close to these rare items, 
and his special private exhi- 
bition for attendees put even 
more of these items into our 
careful hands. The host and 
moderator of the conference. 
Professor James Kincaid, did 
a fabulous job of introductions and commentary for the 
prestigious cadre of speakers you've read about earlier in 
this issue, and well deserves a round of applause from the 
Society. 

Looking back on the successful meetings I've had 
the pleasure of helping to arrange makes me temporarily 
forget the many hurdles it took to get there. Which brings 
me to the next meeting and thoughts for the future: the 
Board of Directors has a standing intention to meet in 
the New York City area each year. Sometimes that does 
not mean every other meeting, but rather once per calen- 
dar year. To that end, we will be meeting in NYC in the 
fall. We intended to meet in October at the newly reno- 
vated Pierpont Morgan Library in Manhattan, which let 
us know (before the meeting at USC) that they would be 




26 



very happy to host us. However, at the time we went to 
press, the Morgan staff is very involved with their grand 
re-opening and have begged us to wait a few weeks before 
dates and logistics can be arranged. So, the best I can say 
at this moment is as soon as the venue and date is chosen, 
we will send out a mailing and update the LewisCarroll. 
org Web site. 

The NYC meeting also will be an election meeting. 
My second term is coming to an end and I want to take 
this time to thank the members for all the support they 
give the Society. I especially want to thank Mark Burstein 
once again for his efforts not only as vice president but for 
the outstanding job as editor-in-chief of the Knight Letter, 
Dr. Fran Abeles, our long-time Treasurer, for keeping the 
Society's books straight and for taking over as Publica- 
tions Chair; and Cindy Walter, the Society's secretary, for 
all of the myriad operational roles she performs, not the 
least of which is owning the Society's postal address. The 
other members of the Board of Directors and the Board 
of Advisors of course have my thanks for their guidance. 
Details of the elections will be available on the Web site as 
we get closer to the fall meeting. If any of you would like 
to serve on the Society's Executive Committee or Board 
of Directors, I encourage you to write directly to me. 

You may have noticed that you can join or renew your 
membership, contribute to the worthy Funds of the Soci- 
ety, or register for meetings via our Web site and PayPal 
accounts. You will find soon that the Web site is undergo- 
ing a bit of transformation, and we are constantly looking 
at ways to communicate to the membership in a more ef- 
ficient manner. To that end, I encourage all members to 
submit their email addresses to the Society's secretary for 
our mailing list the next time you renew your membership 
or have an occasion to write to Cindy or me. We will not 
publish this information or use these addresses for pur- 
poses outside the business of the Society. 

Finally, the Society intends to restart the practice of 
issuing books and other publications to members as a ben- 
efit of Society membership. This will begin during 2006. 
You will also be receiving a newly updated list of the 
books in our inventory, and these will become available to 
Society members at very special prices. 





You dream so much, Alice 
A folly which you prayse. 
To. Still. The mouths of malice 
Quick rabbit watch spring days. 

Dressed so gracefully 
In your frock of Sunday metaphors, 
You cast tightly mirrored looks 
At images of extinct shadows. 

" 'ere's to the looking lass. 
The lovely, lavish liar: 
Oh! It 's lovely jam! 
Saint Mathematics choir. " 

"That Lady! Are you mad at her? 
That cheeky quince of 'arts! 
The cherished cat o 'ninepillars 
That mocks the turtle's tarts!" 

Your daze of fierce abandon 
Are numbered, deep, and dirty 
A liddel song a played upon 
a carrolless hurdy-gurdy. 

Dean Matter 

Through a Glass Darkly (Futura Novelty, 200^) 
with permission 



27 






"I was reading very early. I taught 
myself when I was about three and 
a half, and readjust everything. 
I read Alice and Dracula the same 
month, I guess, at between five 
and seven." 

'You look at the original drawings 
for Alice in Wonderland that Tenniel 
did, which are just wash drawings, 
rather than engravings. So that the 
Dalziel brothers, or however you 
pronounce them, are really re- 
sponsible, in a sense, for the qual- 
ity of the Tenniel drawings. For 
instance, those funny square-toed 
feet that turn up in the Alice are 
not Tenniel — they're the Dalziel 
brothers. Because in every single 
thing that they ever engraved, no 
matter by whom, those square feet 
turn up." 

"There's a book by Elizabeth 
Sewell, which was the best book 
on nonsense I've ever read. It was 
mostly about Lewis Carroll and Ed- 
ward Lear. Alice and Lear's limer- 
icks and everything are nonsense, 
but they have a connection with 
sense. WTiereas fantasy seems to 
be totally arbitrary at its worst. You 
know, you just think up something 
odd. Or you can start with the end- 
less numbers of children's books 
which are stuck together with the 
first rhyme that comes into some- 
body's head for an animal's name 
or something. Well, I don't wish to 
denigrate Dr. Seuss, but I mean, 
you know, 'the cat in the hat.'" 

"I plan to do Alice's Adventures in 
Wonderland and Through the Look- 
ing-Glass for Putnam, eventually, 
a project I anticipate with a great 
deal of alarm." 

Edward Gorey, in various 
interviews collected in 
Ascending Peculiarity 
(Harcourt, 2001) 







We [Maurice Sendak and the 
author] walked back up to the 
house with Herman [Sendak's 
German shepherd], and made 
some tea in the kitchen. On the 
wall of the studio is a photograph 
by Lewis Carroll, of Alice Liddell 
as a young woman. Sendak said, 
"I like to think that he was angry 
at her for growing up: to get even, 
he took the picture when she was 
slumped." 

Cynthia Zarin, "Not Nice: 
Maurice Sendak and the Perils 
of Childhood" in The New 
Yorker, A/^n7 77, 2006. 



Hopes for profits at Macmillan &: Co. 

Very often would tro. 

Concerns that they had 
That an author was mad 

Or just cracked, like Ho. Do. 



She [Celia Johnson] landed this, 
her first major film role [In Which 
We Serve], by uncharacteristic 
means. Usually shy, she saw [Noel] 
Coward at a party late in 1941 and, 
knowing that he was casting the 
film, asked for the part. He invited 
her for a screen test, where they 
"talked for hours . . . until we'd 
exhausted every topic of conversa- 
tion. Then suddenly Noel began to 
spout bits of 'The Walrus and the 
Carpenter' at me. What was the 
sun doing? he said. Shining on the 
sea, I told him exuberantly, shining 
with all its might. If seven maids 
with seven mops swept it for half a 
year, he said, considering the situ- 
ation gravely, do you suppose (and 
he dropped his voice because he 
wanted a very sad bit for the cam- 
era) that they could get it clear? I 
doubt it, I told him with an abso- 
lutely miserable face, and shed a 
bitter tear ... It looked quite crazy 
in the rushes. But Noel seemed to 
like it and I got the part." 
Philip Hoare, 

Noel Coward: A Biography 
(Simon &' Schuster, 199^) 




H^«/^tee«^ 



28 



^^ 



Another Contemporary Sylvie and Bruno Review 



CLARE IMHOLTZ 



■^^^^^^ nother Sylvie and Bruno review has been dis- 
^^^A interred from dim library periodical stor- 
M. ^age stacks and is presented for your reading 

pleasure. This one is interesting on two counts: it was 
written by a woman, and it appeared in a magazine 
written for children, not adults. The author was L. T 
Meade, a prolific and quite popular writer of girls' 
school stories and other novels, and editor of A^a- 
lanta, a magazine for girls, from 1887-1893. Meade's 
real name was Elizabeth (Lillie) Thomasina Meade 
Smith. She was the eldest daughter of a clergyman, 
and her evangelical concerns are obvious in her gen- 
erally positive review. [ Other contemporary reviews of the 
S&B books are found in ¥%Ls 62, 63, 67, 71, 72, and 74.] 

ATALANTA, MARCH, 1 89O 

There are few sweeter children to be found, either 
in or out of Fairyland, than Sylvie and Bruno; at the 
same time, the book is disappointing. It is meant to 
inform, to instruct, to enlighten; but its information 
is given in the form of a medley, its instructions are 
somewhat irritating, and its flashes of light are per- 
haps too brilliant for our weak vision. Grown people 
cannot help being disappointed in the book, prin- 
cipally because they expect so much from Mr. Car- 
roll. There are some children, however, who, seeing 
with a clearer vision, will skip the homilies and the 
love-story, and revel in the fairy tale which runs like a 
bright chain of the purest gold through the volume. 
Sylvie and Bruno appear to perfection here, and Mr. 
Carroll is once more the Magician who conjured up 
scenes at the back of the Looking-Glass, and caused 
Alice to be almost drowned in her own tears. Once 
more he is the old friend who imparts truths to make 
a boy or girl better for a lifetime with the delicate tip 
of his fairy wand. It seems a pity he should leave a 
country to which he alone of all men possesses the 
key. For there will never be another Alice, nor per- 
haps in her way, although she does not quite come up 
to Alice, another Sylvie. Mr. Carroll complains that 
copyists have trenched on her domain, but surely the 
copies have been of the feeblest and most shadowy 
order, as one cannot recall their existence. Sylvie's 
and Bruno's adventures in their fairy world can only 
be described in their creator's words. These children 
are Mr. Carroll's own, the babies of his brain, impos- 



sible to imitate, and yet like, so like, every baby in all 
the nurseries in the world. 

Mr. Carroll's preface to the volume is full of in- 
terest. In it, he explains some of the motives which 
prompted him to tell the present story. It is written, 
"not for money and not for fame, but in the hope of 
supplying for the children whom I love, some thoughts 
that may suit those hours of innocent merriment which 
are the very life of childhood; and also in the hope of 
suggesting to them and to others some thoughts that 
would prove, I would fain hope, not wholly out of har- 
mony with the graver cadences of life." 

His preface has some valuable suggestions with 
regard to books desirable to be written. Amongst oth- 
ers, he proposes that a Child's Bible should appear, 
with carefully selected passages, and full of pictures. 
The principles of selection would be that religion 
should be put before a child as a revelation of love. 

He does not think it is necessary to apologize for 
the graver thoughts introduced into his books, and 
one of his sentences comes with the solemnity of an 
undying truth. It is this — 

"It seems quite possible to lead, for years to- 
gether, a life of unmixed gaiety... A man may 
fix his own times for admitting serious thought, 
for attending public worship, for prayer, for 
reading the Bible: all such matters he can 
defer to that 'convenient season', which is so 
apt never to occur at all; but he cannot defer, 
for one single moment, the necessity of at- 
tending to a message, which may come before 
he has finished reading this page — ' This night 
shall thy soul be required of thee.'" 

The songs in the present volume are not so many 
as in Mr. Carroll's earlier works. Those introduced, 
however, are quite up to his own standard. Only Mr. 
Gilbert can compete with Lewis Carroll in this pe- 
culiar form of genius. The 'Musical Gardener' has 
been quoted in almost every re\dew; perhaps also the 
'Three Badgers,' but with Harry Furniss's inimitable 
illustrations I cannot help reproducing the latter 
verses here. [The reviexv ends with five verses from said 
poem, along luith two ofFurniss '5 badger drawings.] 



29 






An ArfihiUri if Sransf ariaaUiA 



JENIFER RANSOM 



In numerology, the number five represents the 
energy of adventure, freedom, and change, and 
the fifth chapter of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 
is rich in the symbohsm of far-reaching transforma- 
tion. It is said that God must be a mathematician; he 
may also be a numerologist, and just may be symbol- 
ized by the Caterpillar, cozily ensconced on a mush- 
room, smoking his hookah and lording it over those 
who, like Alice, are seeking answers. He, too, seeks 
one: 'You! Who are you?'' In this, he may represent 
consciousness itself, which is continually asking us to 
define our identity. A change in consciousness may 
require a period of land-locked, fuzzy caterpillar- 
creeping, followed by seques- 
tering in a chrysalis, before 
taking flight as the "butter- 
fly" of a new and glorious 
manifestation. The Caterpil- 
lar takes a cavalier attitude 
toward Alice's perception 
that such a transformation is 
"strange," implying that he's 
accustomed to it. 

Of course, normal cater- 
pillars go through this only 
once. 

Marc Edmund Jones, in 
his Studies in Alice at the Sa- 
bian Assembly Web site, www. 
sabian.org/alice.htm, sees 

the Caterpillar as symbolizing the inner self: "The 
real or inner self is symbolized by the worm. ... Ob- 
serve the development of the primal streak or worm- 
like beginning of differentiation in the embryo. ... 
The convenient symbolism of the inner self is further 
borne out in the fact that the true butterfly does not 
eat, but exists through the whole span of its existence, 
aerially or spiritually or in beauty, on the vitality it has 
stored up in the worm state." This also applies to the 
metaphor of the butterfly as the fulfillment of an idea 
that has undergone incubation and is then realized 
in form, living on the power that has built up around 
its "inner self in the womb of thought, through the 
time of gestation. (Many butterflies do, in fact, eat, 



"TBEN UU M 

DISAPPEARING TBRGUGK 

THE mmi RINGS 

@F m ^IND" 

BOB DYLAN 

"Mr. Tambourine Man 



living primarily on nectar from flowers, but some do 
not, and the metaphor is a good one.) 

The Caterpillar's mushroom seat and hookah- 
smoking have often been taken to be one of the in- 
dications that the Alice books were inspired by some 
kind of hallucinogenic drug, or, at least, that Carroll 
was familiar with them. Although it is highly unlikely 
that he ever used these substances, Carroll was an in- 
veterate reader and explorer of many areas of life, es- 
pecially of the occult (he owned a copy of Stimulants 
And Narcotics (1864) by the English toxicologist Fran- 
cis Anstie), and it is possible that he had some knowl- 
edge of them. Even if so, it is doubtful the subject 
held much personal interest 
for him, since he was quite 
conservative, even ascetic, in 
his habits, although progres- 
sive in his thought. Migraines 
and temporal lobe epilepsy 
have been suggested as 
contributing to his unusual 
imagination, but here, too, 
the facts are inconclusive. In 
any case, he demonstrated a 
superb, wide-ranging imagi- 
nation throughout his life, 
as well as a highly developed 
spiritual awareness that went 
far beyond the dogma of his 
church. 
Although psychedelic experiences are often fa- 
cilitated by psychoactive drugs, they are not required. 
The word "psychedelic" means "mind-manifesting," 
and the psychedelic experience, as noted in Wikipe- 
dia, "is characterized by the perception of aspects of 
one's mind previously unknown, or by the creative 
exuberance of the mind liberated from its ordinary 
fetters." In this broader sense, the two books can be 
seen as psychedelic literature, and Tenniel's tableau 
of the Caterpillar sitting on the mushroom smoking 
a hookah, with Alice peeking up at him just behind 
the mushroom, is a powerful archetype of transfor- 
mation. 

The hookah may be the most arresting aspect 
of that tableau (what was that Caterpillar smoking?). 



30 



F^" 



A CATERP/66LEi 



Continues Jones: "The hookah, an arrangement 
to pass smoke through water, is an added touch of 
unwitting genius, for the endocrines alone make 
possible the entrance of spirit or smoke into sensation 
or water." Natives of aboriginal cultures, including 
American Indians, have long used tobacco to connect 
to the divine realm and to the Great Spirit. 

Swiss anthropologist Jeremy Narby set out to 
discover how, out of the many thousands of plants 
growing in the Amazon rainforest, the natives had 
learned which of them had medicinal properties and 
how best to combine them. He was told the information 
came from the shamans when in altered states of 
consciousness. In The Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the 
Origins of Knowledge, Narby explores the shamans' use 
of high-nicotine native tobacco and other, ingestible 
plant substances such as ayahuasca and psychoactive 
mushrooms. In altered states of consciousness, they 
can "take their consciousness down to the molecular 
level and gain access to information related to DNA, 
which they call 'animate essences' or 'spirits.' This is 
where they see double helixes, 
twisted ladders, and chromosome 
shapes. This is how shamanic 
cultures have known for 
millennia that the vital principle 
is the same for all living beings 
and is shaped like two entwined 
serpents (or vines, ropes, 
ladders). DNA is the source of 
their astonishing botanical and 
medicinal knowledge, which can 
be attained only in defocalized 
and 'nonrational' states of 
consciousness, though its results 
are empirically verifiable." 

Narby hypothesized that 
properties of nicotine or the 
psychoactive plants used by 
shamans "activate their respective 
receptors, which sets off a cascade 
of electrochemical reactions 
inside the neurons, leading to 
the stimulation of DNA and, 
more particularly, to its emission of visible waves, 
which shamans perceive as 'hallucinations.' ... There, 
I thought, is the source of knowledge: DNA, living in 
water and emitting photons, like an aquatic dragon 
spitting fire." He theorizes that photons are visible as 
light signals that communicate information from the 
DNA cell to cell. Scientists do not know the function 
of 98 percent of our DNA, which they term "junk 
DNA"; Narby suggests we call it "mystery DNA," and 
theorizes that our collective DNA is interconnected 
and in constant communication. 

The information the Amazonian shamans 
received was not confined to botanical knowledge, but 









incorporated into the learning of necessary skills 
such as weaving and woodworking. In fact, anything 
the natives wanted to know was accessible through 
the shamans. Narby hypothesized that the symbol- 
ism of the snake, a constant in the wisdom traditions 
throughout history (often accompanied by the Tree 
of Life or a Caduceus), is connected to the double 
helix of DNA in almost all living beings — this, despite 
the fact that conventional science did not discover 
the existence and structure of DNA until 1953. He 
cites various Cosmic Serpent creation myths, such as 
that of the plumed serpent Quetzalcoatl, and refers 
to our DNA as a master of transformation: "The cell- 
based life DNA informs made the air we breathe, the 
landscape we see, and the mind-boggling diversity of 
living beings of which we are a part." After Alice in- 
gests some of the mushroom and finds that she is able 
to bend her neck around like a snake, she encounters 
an angry pigeon who shrieks that Alice must be "a 
kind of serpent." 

The transformational features of the mushroom 
also have a historical meaning, 
though not one that you'll find 
in many history books. Ethnobot- 
anist and "psychonaut" Terence 
McKenna put forth, in his book 
Food For The Gods, the theory that 
psychoactive mushrooms were a 
crucial catalyst in our rapid evo- 
lution. The human brain size 
tripled over several million years; 
the hallucinogenic compound 
DMT (di-methyl-tryptamine), 
found in the the mushrooms and 
other plants used by shamans, is 
one of the chemical factors that 
McKenna theorizes played a role: 
"We literally may have eaten our 
way to higher consciousness." 
DMT is also naturally produced 
in small amounts in the pineal 
gland, notably in deep dream 
states and at birth and death. 
Few books convey deep dream 
states as well as the Alice hook?,; those who insist that 
Carroll's works are the products of drug experiences 
may be sensing this dream chemical wafting through 
their pages. 

Throughout her dream-adventures, Alice strug- 
gles with the epistemological question of whether 
her experiences are real. Are our dreams and other 
altered-state experiences any less "real" than our wak- 
ing life? Writes Rick Strassman in his book DMT, The 
Spirit Molecrile. "The other planes of existence are al- 
ways there ... but we cannot perceive them because 
we are not designed to do so; our hard-wiring keeps 
us tuned in to Channel Normal." Rather than seeing 



31 



these other planes as pure hallucination, Strassman 
accepts them as realities that we tune in to when in 
these altered states. 

Psychedelic mushrooms are also called ethneo- 
gens, 2L term meaning "creating or becoming divine 
within." The yogic headstand is perhaps another such 
tool. Alice's rendering of "You Are Old, Father Wil- 
liam" is the first instance of a character "incessantly" 
standing on his head; this is also a favored, though 
less deliberate, posture of the White Knight in Look- 
ing-Glass, who assures Alice: "The more head-down- 
wards I am, the more I keep inventing new things." 

Most babies face head downwards in their final 
weeks in the womb; "inventing new things" can be 
taken as a metaphor for any kind of birth or new 
beginning. We naturally transform our world when 
standing on our head, both perceptively and on inner 
levels, through action on the glands, particularly the 
pineal. The Hanged Man, hanging serenely upside 
down from a tree in the twelfth card of the Tarot, is 
an archetype of this transitional and transformational 
process, and the Caterpillar itself, like all headed for 
butterflyhood, will hang head downwards as it trans- 
forms within its chrysalis. 



According to the insect biologist Carroll Williams, 
in an article titled "When Insects Change Form" {Life, 
February 11, 1952), a caterpillar's transformation is 
triggered by a hormone in the brain which, in turn, 
stimulates the thoracic hormone in the region of the 
heart, which "forces the body cells to produce a sub- 
stance called cytochrome, which hastens growth and 
change. ... This same cytochrome exists in the cells 
of the human body, but its role as a growth factor has 
never been known." Along with the 98 percent of our 
DNA that seemingly has no function, it could be that 
this cytochrome substance is far more crucial than we 
know. 

Is it possible that the Absolute has been co- 
cooned in us, waiting for the right time to awaken 
fully in our hearts? Is this what we will experience in 
the future — or now, if we can but invoke it — and will 
the Caterpillar of our collective self flutter free of its 
cocoon, utterly transformed? 



,^^f!^ 



"A// of Alice's subsequent distortions, softened by the loving irony 
of Lewis CarrolVs imagination, retain the flavor of mushroomic 
hallucinations. Is there not something uncanny about the injection of 
this mushroom into Alice's story? What led the quiet Oxford don to hit 
on a device so felicitous, but at the same time sinister for the initiated 
readers, when he launched his maiden on her way? Did he 
dredge up this curious specimen of wondrous and even 
fearsome lore from some deep well of half-conscious 
folk-knowledge ? " 

R. Gordon Wasson and 
Valentina Pavlovna Wasson, 
Mushrooms, Russia and History 
(Pantheon Books, 1957) 







32 







Carrollian Notes 




SIC, SIC, SIC 

"140 Years Ago: Curiouser and Cu- 
riouser": Mathematician Charles 
Dodgson, 33 — a.k.a. Lewis Car- 
roll — publishes Alice's Adventures 
Under Ground m November 1865. 
- Alison McLean in "This Month 
in History," Smithsonian, Nov. 2005. 

Tsk. There xvas no mention o/Won- 
derland in the rest of the article, and 
no correction of the title in subsequent 
issues. My offer of help to Ms. McLean 
before the article came to be luas ig- 
nored. Off with their heads. 

A designer of paper dolls as well 
as a collector of vintage ones, her 
collection included some, ob- 
tained 20-30 years ago, that were 
reproductions of paper dolls made 
by Robert Teneal, the original art- 
ist of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Won- 
derland. - The Benton [Arkansas] 
Courier, October 24, 2005. 

Editor [San Francisco Chronicle, 
October 7, 2005]: As consumers 
of Cheshire cheese, admirers of 
Lewis Carroll's Cheshire cat in 
"Alice in Wonderland," and own- 
ers of Cheshire Cat Clinic in Oak- 
land, my husband and I wondered 
what happened to the second "H" 
in "Chesire-Cat smiles" (Letters, 
Oct. 5). For your penance, we 
suggest the first stanza of Carroll's 
poem, "Jaberwocky": 

"Twas brillig, and the slithy toves 
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe 

All mimsy were the borogroves. 
And the mome raths outgrabe." 

Rebecca Sodikoff 
Oakland 



Dear Mrs. Sodikoff: What happened 
to it ? Presumably the same thing that 
happened to the second "B " in "Jab- 
berwocky " in your letter. Possibly also 
related to the extraneous "R " of your 
misspelled "borogoves "! 



^ 

THE RATH OF GRAPES 

A BBC news story on January 12 
(by the suitably yclept Chris Hogg) 
was headlined "Taiwan Breeds 
Green-Glowing Pigs." National 
Taiwan University's Department 
of Animal Science and Technol- 
ogy combined DNA from jellyfish 
with pig embryos to produce 
"transgenic" pigs that glow grape- 
green in the dark. They claim that 
while other researchers have bred 
partly fluorescent pigs, theirs are 
the only pigs in the world which 
are green through and through. 
See news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia- 
pacific/4605202.stm. Why of such 
interest to Carrollians? Surely you 
remember what Humpty told Alice 
a "rath" was. 



DODO DADA 

Online magazine Slate (Slate.com) 
has been going mad for dodos of 
late. First was "Quagga Quest" by 
Jon Lackman, on January 3: "In 
what would be an unprecedented 
feat, a South African amateur 
scientist says he is going to bring 
an animal back from extinction: 
the quagga. A large mammal that 
descended from the zebra, the 
quagga filled South Africa's plains 
for millennia. But it fell to gun- 
toting European colonists and was 
last seen alive in 1883. ... 



Perhaps, then, as a symbol of rac- 
ist and sexist fear-mongering, the 
quagga is best forgotten. If only 
someone would bring back, say, 
the dodo instead!" (www.slate. 
com/id/2132747/). And lo! Some- 
one did! 

Finnish artist Harri Kallio was 
named Slates Artist of the Month 
in February. "There's something 
appealingly odd about Harri 
Kallio's color photographs of 
dodos in their lush natural habitat, 
beginning with the fact that they 
depict a species that went extinct 
about 150 years before photog- 
raphy was invented. Kallio first 
started thinking about the dodo 
when he reread Lewis Carroll's 
Alice in Wonderland and noticed 
John Tenniel's famous drawings of 
the brawny bird with its tiny wings 
and enormous hooked beak. T 
couldn't help but laugh,' Kallio 
recalls in the introduction to his 
own book. The Dodo and Mauritius 
Island: Imaginary Encounters [Dewi 
Lewis, 2005]. 'Somehow it was 
hard to believe that once upon a 
time there really had been some- 
thing like the Dodo out there in 
the world.' 

"The dodo was a large, flight- 
less bird driven to extinction after 
the Dutch settled its native Mau- 
ritius, a previously uninhabited 
island in the middle of the Indian 
Ocean, in 1598. With no natural 
predators, the dodo was not only 
flightless but fearless, and this 
made it easy prey for hunters, who 
unfairly mocked the bird's obtuse- 
ness. (The word dodo comes from 
the Portuguese doudo, meaning 
stupid. Nowadays, we would call it 
'ecologically naive.') 



33 



'"My idea,' he writes, 'was not 
so much to carry out a scientific 
reconstruction, but rather to 
place back into the landscape of 
Mauritius the Dodo of Alice in 
Wonderland — a character faithful 
to its appearances in art history, 
a character that is part myth and 
part real.' Kallio constructed two 
life-sized sculptural models of the 
dodo — a male and a female — with 
adjustable aluminum skeletons, 
silicon rubber heads, and bod- 
ies covered in swan and goose 
feathers. With the two models 
stuffed into a large backpack, he 
traveled around Mauritius and 
photographed the birds in various 
remote locations where the land- 
scape still looks more or less the 
way it did in the 17th century." 
Kallio's photographs will be 
on view at Bonni Benrubi Cal- 
ler)' in New York from February 
through April 1. www.slate.com/ 
id/2136049/. Many of the pictures 
can be seen at www.harrikallio, 
com/dodoexhibit.html. 



OF SEX AND QUEENS 

According to evolutionary bi- 
ologist Olivia Judson, one of the 
three chief theories of why sexual 
reproduction evolved — ^which 
was suggested by J. B. S. Haldane 
(1949), H.J. Bremermann (1980), 
W. D. Hamilton (1980) and J. 
Tooby (1982) — was nicknamed the 
Red Queen by Graham Bell ( The 
Masterpiece of Nature: The Evolution 
and Genetics of Sexuality, 1982). Dr. 
Judson explains: "Susceptibility 
to infectious diseases — or more 
generally, to parasites, whether 
viruses, bacteria, fungi, or other 
nasties — typically has a genetic 
component. Since asexuals keep 
the same genes (give or take a 
mutation or two) from one gen- 
eration to the next, parasites can 
easily evolve to infiltrate their 
defenses, annihilating clones. In 
contrast, sex, by mixing up genes, 
prevents parasites from becoming 
too well adapted to their hosts. Sex 
is an advantage because it breaks 



34 



up gene combinations: it creates 
the genetic version of a moving 
target. With each act of sex, the 
parasites have to start again from 
square one. The name of the the- 
ory, the Red Queen, comes from 
Through the Looking-Glass. Remem- 
ber? The Red Queen says to Alice, 
'Now, here, you see, it takes all the 
running you can do, to keep in the 
same place.' In other words, you 
have to change to stay where you 
are." - Dr. Tatiana 's Sex Advice to 
All Creation (Metropolitan Books, 
2002) 



SERENDIPITY DO 

Andrew Sellon 

I have not had the opportunity 
before now to tell you of an odd 
Carrollian experience that Tim 
and 1 had this past May. We live 
in Park Slope in Brooklyn, but 
one evening we went back to our 
old neighborhood, Carroll Car- 
dens (our subway stop used to be 
Carroll St. and we lived opposite 
Carroll Park, but it was a different 
Carroll) to have dinner and do a 
little shopping. 

After dinner, as we were stroll- 
ing along Court Street (the main 
shopping venue), we passed by an 
old building 1 hadn't paid much 
attention to in the nine years we 
had lived in the neighborhood, be- 
cause it was always closed up and 
the place looked unused. It caught 
my attention because on this 
particular evening, the large old 
wooden door was ajar and strains 
of piano playing and an operatic 
voice singing "Speak roughly to 
your little boy" were wafting out 
into the warm evening air. 

Needless to say, we stopped and 
(in the nervy style of true New 
Yorkers) poked our heads inside 
to see just what exactly was going 
on. We discovered that it was some 
sort of small, converted storefront 
performing space. There was a 
simple platform with lighting set 
up, and two performers rehearsing 
in street clothes: a young woman 
singing Alice, and a large man 
singing the role of the Duch- 



ess. As they were in mid-rehearsal, 
and we had no official business 
being there and had other errands 
to run, we did not linger. But I did 
pick up a card from the door. 

The company was called the 
"Vertical Player Repertory," and 
the card advertised "Opera for 
Kids: Fully staged excerpts (the 
fun parts only!) from Mozart's The 
Magic Flute, Humperdinck's Hansel 
and Gretel, Yoav Cal's The Dwarf 
Ben Yarmolinsky's Alice (in Wonder- 
land)." I wonder if anyone else in 
the Society knows of this version? I 
googled it, and found a plain text 
page listing the composer's works. 
It says simply "Children's musical 
on texts by Lewis Carroll, 1981." 
Another site lists its American 
premiere as April 15-16, 2005 in 
New York. Another mentions that 
it is based on both Alice books. 
It might be interesting to learn 
more, and some excerpts might be 
appropriate for an upcoming NYC 
meeting. 



DELIVA FALLETTA 

"The Nicholas Falletta Collec- 
tion of Lewis Carroll Books and 
Manuscripts" at Christie's, London 
(South Kensington), November 
30, 2005, had many exceptionally 
desirable items, including: rare 
mathematical pamphlets, some 
unrecorded in The Handbook; 
the only known copy of Notes on 
the First Part of Algebra ( 1 861 ) ; cy- 
clostyle publications; a bifolium 
of Vansittart's hsitin Jabberwocky 
(1881); a charming 1893 letter to 
Princess Alice, with a trompe I'oeil 
spider drawn on it; the original 
copperplate for the final version of 
"The Mouse's Tale"; Carroll's own 
marked-up copy, in the original 
cloth, of Looking-Glass (1893) in- 
dicating all the printing problems 
that led to its suppression; Alice 
Liddell's own copies often differ- 
ent editions of the Alice books, and 
Carroll's own copy, the only one 
known, of the rare private printing 
of The Lost Plum Cake and a presen- 
tation copy of the first trade edi- 
tion. Christies.com has records of 



the pieces, the auction results, and 
the catalog for sale. Sale # is 5056. 



DODGSON ON HOLIDAY 

Clare Imholtz 

Of the three Lewis Carroll Soci- 
ety (UK) weekends I have been 
fortunate to attend, last summer's 
trip to Eastbourne was far and 
away the best in terms of gain- 
ing insight into Charles Dodgson 
and his ever fascinating life. From 
1877 through '97, Dodgson spent 
a substantial part of his life in 
Eastbourne, spending long sum- 
mer holidays there every year. In 
Eastbourne, Dodgson wrote the 
bulk of Sylvie and Bruno (though 
one would never know it from the 
books, nor are there any signs of 
tiny fairies in the local woods) , 
enjoyed frequent visits from rela- 
tions and child friends, went for 
long, mostly solitary walks, and 
attended innumerable plays and 
church services. 

August and I traveled to Lon- 
don first, and were relieved to find 
the city in a normal mode follow- 
ing the terrorist bombings some 
three weeks before. We took the 
train to Eastbourne — a journey of 
only VA hours — then struck out 
on foot for the Lansdowne Hotel 
on King Edward's Parade, tugging 
our suitcases behind us, and find- 
ing our way after only the usual bit 
of misdirection. Eastbourne is a 
classic sedate English resort town 
with a terraced approach to the 
sea. King Edward's Parade, where 
the choicest hotels are located, 
most of them in converted private 
homes that date back to Dodgson 's 
time and before, is the uppermost 
terrace. The next level is covered 
with plantings; then comes a path 
along which Dodgson would have 
strolled when he went out in 
hopes of meeting young friends or 
making new ones. More plantings, 
and then several feet below is the 
beach, actually comprising mud 
flats, seaweed, and shingle, none 
too inviting. 



The long Study Weekend 
opened on Thursday, August 
18th, with a very informative talk 
by Alan White, focusing on the 
prodigious amount of writing and 
reading Dodgson accomplished 
at his summer digs in Eastbourne 
(although never as much as he 
hoped to). We then struck out for 
the Eastbourne Historical Society, 
stopping on the way to pay hom- 
age at 7 Lushington Road — ^where 
Dodgson stayed for about eigh- 
teen years of visits to Eastbourne, 
initially in a third-floor room, and 
later renting a first-floor sitting 
room and bedroom. Unfortu- 
nately, we were unable to enter the 
building (or should I say, fortu- 
nately — it is now a dental surgery) . 
Mark Richards read a brief ac- 
count of the Dyer family, who lived 
in the house, and Dodgson 's loyal 
relationship with them. 

At the Historical Society, we 
were greeted graciously with 
sherry and shown an excellent 
exhibit of the Oilman collection of 
Dodgson photographs. Art histo- 
rian Michael Kaye gave a superb 
talk. Kaye believes that Dodgson 's 
photographs of children are his 
best, due to their stunning tex- 
tures and the obvious magical 
connection between sitter and 
photographer, but that his nude 
photographs lack artistry, perhaps 
because Dodgson, with tinting and 
fictive settings, was trying to di- 
vorce them from reality. Kaye also 
emphasized his view that many of 
the photographs are posed so as 
to imitate attitudes seen in famous 
paintings. In general, although 
Kaye thinks that Dodgson 's photo- 
graphs outshine many of his con- 
temporaries', he does not believe 
that they are up to the standard 
of his writing — a statement that 
sparked a lively discussion among 
LCS members who had up till 
then listened politely to his talk. 

That evening we heard a lec- 
ture by Society member Roger 
Scowen who, with his wife Pat, has 
made a special study of Dodgson 's 
perambulations. Walking for plea- 
sure was not a widespread 



phenomenon in the nineteenth 
century, but Dodgson often 
walked more than twenty miles a 
day, following roads and clear-cuts 
rather than cutting across fields; 
he wore no special walking clothes 
or boots, and as far as we know 
carried no refreshment or equip>- 
ment. During 1888-92, his walks 
were temporarily cut back due 
to knee problems, and he sorely 
(no pun intended) missed them. 
The cliffs of Beachy Head (about 
three miles round-trip) were a 
favorite early-morning destination, 
sometimes accompanied by one 
or another child friend who would 
then stay to breakfast. Roger's 
appropriately "rambling" talk also 
covered Dodgson 's other destina- 
tions, such as Hastings, reached by 
a five-hour hike, to visit friends (at 
least he would return by train). 

Dr. Selwyn Goodacre was next 
up, enlightening us in his usual 
entertaining style as to Dodgson 's 
health while at Eastbourne — piles, 
agues, arthritic knees, migrainal 
auras — nothing was omitted. Sel- 
wyn described Dodgson 's concerns 
about sanitation at his boarding 
house (he was somewhat ahead of 
the times in this concern; he even 
wanted an expert to come from 
Oxford to certify that the drains 
were safe) and his desire for an as- 
bestos fire in his bedroom. (Con- 
trary to what is often believed, the 
asbestos used in fires is not hazard- 
ous.) 

Friday morning we were treated 
to two additional talks. Anne 
Amor, in her customary scholarly 
manner, discussed the friends 
Dodgson had made in Eastbourne 
and those whom he invited down 
to stay with him: Dolly Blakemore, 
Phoebe Carlo, Edith Rix, Isa 
Bowman (whom he made go to 
the dentist) , and several others, 
including at least one boy, Francis 
"Pitty" Patmore, whom he taught 
to fold paper pistols. Dodgson 
invited numerous guests to East- 
bourne in part because he wished 
them to have the opportunity to 
share his healthy seaside surround- 



35 



ings. Bible reading was a popular 
activity with his young friends as 
were walks and backgammon. 
After Anne, guest speaker Edward 
Thomas talked about Dodgson's 
theatre-going during his summer 
holidays, and we set out to visit two 
local theatres that Dodgson had at- 
tended, the Devonshire Park and, 
a cut below, the Hippodrome, a 
variety house that in Dodgson's 
time was known as the Theatre 
Royale or the Opera House, and 
that featured such entertainments 
as "Miss Ella and her Educated 
Lions," which I think we would 
all have enjoyed. Dodgson would 
sit in the first balcony because, 
strangely enough, the seats up 
in front, the ones we would pay 
dearly for today, were strictly for 
the hoi polloi back then, at least 
in Eastbourne. We received the 
full tours of the two theatres, and 
were even able to walk around 
backstage. 

In the afternoon we took a 
coach to the Towner Art Gallery 
where, mirable dictu, we found 
an impressive exhibit of Car- 
rollian art, including paintings, 
lithographs, drawings, and pho- 
tographs, by seven LCS members: 
Marion Hiller, Brian Partridge, 
Pilar Correia, Norman Roberts, 
Michael Taylor, Jean Stockdale, 
and Frances Broomfield. The 
coach then took us up to Beachy 
Head, a promontory high above 
the sea, from which eight slightly 
deranged thrill-seekers walked 
down into town in torrential rain, 
following as best we might the 
path Dodgson would probably 
have taken. After dinner, another 
fine talk, as Edward Wakeling 
described in detail the grief that 
Harry Furniss gave Dodgson over 
the Sylvie and Bruno illustrations. 

Saturday we went by coach for 
historic Hastings, about sixteen 
miles away. En route, we viewed 
both eleventh- and nineteenth- 
century coastal fortifications, 
meant to repel Normans and Na- 
poleon, respectively. At the Hast- 
ings Museum and Gallery, in 



36 



a beautiful oak-paneled room with 
stained-glass windows (the room 
had been brought from India 
entire by world travelers Lord 
and Lady Brassey) , we heard local 
historian, pastor, and raconteur 
par excellence Edward Preston 
tell us absolutely everything that 
is to be known about Hastings 
from the Normans on, but with 
emphasis on the many literary 
figures who have dwelt there, in- 
cluding George MacDonald, Harry 
Furniss, and Beatrix Potter. Here, 
too, Mark Richards spoke about 
the relationship between Dodg- 
son and MacDonald, and Selwyn 
Goodacre stepped to the podium 
again, this time to discuss Sidney 
Herbert Williams, Dodgson's first 
bibliographer, whom Selwyn finds 
something of an enigmatic char- 
acter. We walked around Hastings, 
viewed MacDonald's house as 
well as that of Dodgson's psellis- 
mologist, Dr. Hunt, with whom 
he stayed on occasion for speech 
correction. On the way home, we 
stopped briefly in St. Leonard's, 
where Williams lived. That evening 
we donned posh garb and enjoyed 
a gala dinner. August offered a 
Latin toast to Dodgson, derived 
from a medieval drinking song but 
suitably modified for the occasion. 

Dodgson was also a frequent 
visitor to Brighton, which we vis- 
ited on the final day of the week- 
end, where he often stayed with 
his old Oxford friend, the Rever- 
end Henry Barclay, at 11 Sussex 
Square. It is a popular myth locally 
that the tunnel in the beautiful 
Sussex Square Gardens leading to 
the seafront provided inspiration 
for Dodgson's White Rabbit disap- 
pearing down the rabbit hole, but 
as it appears Dodgson first visited 
Brighton on 27 August 1872 this is 
clearly not very likely. In 1885, his 
sister Henrietta moved to Brighton 
on her own, for reasons unknown; 
he also visited her regularly. In 
1887, he watched a performance 
of Alice at Brighton's Theatre 
Royal, probably not, however, ac- 
companied by Henrietta, who 



opposed theatrical entertainment. 
The Brighton seaside is chintzy, 
but the town itself boasts two fine 
museums. I highly recommend a 
visit to the Royal Pavilion, which 
has no Dodgson connection, but is 
an outstanding historical building, 
originally the home of George IV, 
one of England's less illustrious 
but more interesting monarchs. 
In the very fine Brighton Museum 
we saw a charming painting by 
George Dunlop Leslie (1835- 
1921) of a mother reading to her 
daughter {Alice in Wonderland, 
c. 1879, below). 




August and I recommend the 
LCS Study Weekends to all Carrol- 
lians. Led by Mark and Catherine 
Richards, Alan White, and Myra 
Campbell (but with help from a 
large and merry band of members, 
many of whom gave informative 
talks while we visited this or that 
site and even during coach rides), 
the British Society puts a tremen- 
dous amount of work into these 
outings, and it shows. The food 
and lodgings are always superb, 
and we have never failed to have 
an outstanding experience. 



TAKE THE KIDS 

An updated calendar for the 
"Alice's Wonderland" exhibition, 
originating at the Children's Dis- 
covery Museum in San Jose, Cali- 
fornia (AZ 70:2-4) is as follows: 
March 2006: closing at the Chil- 
dren's Museum of Manhattan 
May-September: The Chil- 
dren's Museum of Houston 
September-January 2007: Chi- 
cago Children's Museum 
January-May: (at CDM San Jose 
for refurbishment) 
May-September: Creative Dis- 
covery Museum, Chattanooga 



ALICE AND THE DEAN 

Through a Glass Darkly: Shattered 
Reflections of Wonderland 

Dean Motter (Futura Novelty, 
2005) 

Award-winning author/ designer/ 
illustrator Dean Motter has be- 
come well known for his work in 
book- and album-cover designs, 
along with many noteworthy 
graphic novels and comics. His 
1977 portfolio of offset lithogra- 
phy {Alice. Alice.. Alice... : Won- 
derland in Ten Regions) is a highly 
sought collectors' item, portraying 
a dark, delerious, haunting vision 
("a visual allegory for madness"), 
replete with literary allusions. 
Fortunately, Dean has seen fit to 
reissue the drawings (digitally re- 
stored, revised and newly colored) 
in book format, and has included 
four new plates, poetry (see p. 27), 
and an afterword. $13 from www. 
lulupress.com. 48 pages. Motter's 
work may be seen at home. earth- 
link. net/~dean. motter/. 



af73 



m 

LEAVE THIS STONE UNTURNED 

Andreio Ogus 

White Stone Day: 
A Victorian Thriller 

John MacLlachlan Gray 
(St. Martin's Minotaur, 2006) 

(spoiler alert: the following 
reveals the novel's plot.) 
WTiat can one say about a novel 
that thanks Carroll for its inspira- 
tion, and then places his doppel- 
ganger, Rev. William Leffington 
Boltbyn, within a circle of vile 
hacks? 

That Boltbyn is either so 
incredibly naive or so astoundingly 
stupid that he is unable to 
distinguish between a sleeping 
child and a dead one? 

That literally marking one's 
diaries by pasting white stones 
into the pages would make them 
difficult to read and impossible to 
close? 

That Boltbyn's stor)' telling is 
interesting, suggesting how an 




author might turn the dross of life 
into the gold of literature? 

That Edmund Whitty, the hap- 
less journalist hero, frequently 
chloroformed out of conscious- 
ness, is absurdly influenced by an 
engrained sense of station? 

That at least one red herring, 
depends on the unbelievable idea 
that WTiitty's dead brother, an 
amateur photographer, used him- 
self as a nude model? 

That even the stock wicked 
aristocrat, bent on restoring his 
uneven fortunes with child por- 
nography, could not be so stupid 
as to glass his conservatory with 
the photo plates that disclose his 
crimes? 

That a clairvoyant who "wit- 
nessed " the Duke's unspeakable 
acts is apparently supposed to be 
taken seriously? 

That the Victorian gangster 
with a tender heart is an all too 
familiar character? 

That the psychopaths who 
do much of the dirty work are 
reminiscent of characters in a Neil 
Gaiman novel? 

That Emma Pleasance [sic] 
Lambert's turning from Boltbyn 
may reflect the pathetic truth of 
the pedophilic experience, but his 
sudden interest in her younger 
sister Lydia is distasteful? 

That Emma's sudden maturity 
is that of a sophisticated modern 
woman, not a twelve-year-old Vic- 
torian girl? 

That gambling on rat-killing 
dogs appears to much more con- 
\incing effect in Claire Clark's The 
Great Stink ? 

That Emma and Lydia reveal 
the duke's deeds to their confused 



mother, and then enlist her help 
to "borrow" the ether from the 
photographer's supplies to drown 
her aristocratic lover in his bath? 

That if there are parallels to be 
drawn between the real or imag- 
ined world of Carroll, I prefer not 
to make them? 

That there were no suffragettes 
as such in 1858? 

That in that year Swinburne 
had not yet published under his 
own name? 

That I seriously doubt that 
Punch would even consider pub- 
lishing a poem that included the 
word "pudendum"? 

That if one does suspend one's 
disbelief, the readable style, rapid 
pacing, and suitably "Victorian" 
tone and complex plot make for 
an acceptable thriller? 

That I admit I resented the 
book from the moment I read the 
blurb on the dust jacket? 

That I forced myself to finish 
the book only because Ld agreed 
to write this review for the Knight 
Letter? 



-^ 



MYSTERY SOLVED 

Why a Raven Is Like a Writing Desk: 
An Alice in Wonderland Mystery 

Robert Doucette (Xlibris, 2005) 

Reading this short, humorous 
and enchanting fable, we become 
involved in the adventures of 
Louis Croissant as he travels to 
Oxford to find Gladiola Badcock, 
grand-niece of Mary Hilton 




37 



Badcock, and the true location of 
Wonderland. Decorated with Dou- 
cette's own charming illustrations 
(and the crossword puzzle that 
started M. Croissant on his cross- 
channel journey), the book is a 
most amusing and enjoyable /o/iV. 
Available through Xlibris.com, 
or Amazon.com. Highly recom- 
mended! Paper $18, $28 he. 



REDUXIO AD ABSURDUM 

Sarah Adams 

Alice Redux 

Richard Peabody, ed. (Paycock 

Press, 2006) 

If every woman is secretly Alice, 
does that mean every man is 
secretly the fallacious (or phalla- 
cious) Dodgson, lusting after little 
girls? Or is every man even more 
secretly Alice also, albeit in drag? 
What should one think of a cover 
image of Alice with a smoking 
pistol standing over a dead White 
Rabbit? Alice Redux inspires plenty 
of thoughts in this vein. A book of 
Alice-inspired short stories edited 
by Richard Peabody, with photo- 
graphs by Nancy Taylor, these 31 
tales and novel-excerpts range 
wildly in tone and theme. 

From present-day America to 
seventeenth-century Prague to 
Victorian India to timeless Won- 
derland, Alice is sexually abused, 
battling menopause, forever 
falling down the rabbit hole, in 
therapy, married to Huck Finn, 
sitting on Humpty-Dumpty's wall, 
and/or worshiped as "Our Lady of 
the Mirror." Other stories provide 
commentary by Alice Liddell, her 
mother, her sisters Edith and Lo- 
rina, the dreaming Red King, and, 
of course, Lewis Carroll himself. 
The multiplicity of viewpoints and 
ideas is intriguing but, eventually, 
overwhelming. 

Unfortunately, for all of their 
zaniness, not all of the stories in 
Alice Redux are successful at cap- 
turing the spirit and curiosity of 
Alice. Those that are, in fact, seem 
to be those stories that find the 



strange and wonderous within the 
everyday. Whatever one's response 
to Alice Redux, it is nice to know 
that Carroll's Alice remains un- 
touched, pristine in her mystery, 
yet continuing to be accessible and 
inspiring. 

Order ($16) from Richard Pea- 
body at 3819 North 13th Street, 
Arlington, VA 22201 or www.gar- 
goylemagazine. com/books/pay- 
cock/ alice.html orAmazon.com. 



TEN FOR TEN(NIEL) 

Sarah Adams 

Artist of Wonderland: 

The Life, Political Cartoons, 

and Illustrations of Tenniel 

Frankie Morris (University 
of Virginia Press, 2005) 

As complex as was the life of Lewis 
Carroll, so, too, was that of his 
friend Sir John Tenniel, the artist 
most famously connected with Car- 
roll. Frankie Morris's new book. 
Artist of Wonderland, shines a light 
on the many facets of Tenniel's 
complex character and creations. 
Of course, the chapters on their 
working relationship will be most 
interesting to CarroUian read- 
ers. (Particularly intriguing is the 
chapter on Christmas pantomimes, 
likely unfamiliar to non-British 
readers.) Yet the details of Tenn- 
iel's early years as an artist, his fifty 
years of work on Punch, and his 
conservative politics are equally fas- 
cinating, describing the era almost 
as much as they do the man. 

The wonder isn't that Dr. Mor- 
ris wrote this book; it is that she 
even attempted it. A book that 
includes a detailed biography of 
an artist, an examination of his art- 
work and influences, and a discus- 
sion of the political climate and 
how the artwork affected and was 
affected by it would be daunting 
under any circumstances. But as 
we know from Dr. Morris' article 
discussing her experiences in writ- 
ing the book [KL 75:15-19], most 
previously written documentation 
on Tenniel's life either conflicted 



in major details or was missing al- 
together. By working almost exclu- 
sively with primary sources, how- 
ever, she has written an appealing 
and readable book that paints a 
cohesive picture. Not only does 
the reader feel as if a full 360-de- 
gree portrait has been presented, 
but that Tenniel was someone the 
reader might like to know. 

"m 



ALICE, WHERE ART THOU? 

Clare Imholtz 

That Jorge Luis Borges and Lewis 
Carroll were soulmates, at least 
on some level, is a speculation 
that has not escaped notice of the 
Knight Letter, nor numerous crit- 
ics and artists.' Add now to that 
perspicacious list M. L. Van Nice, 
the artist who created The Library 
at Wadi ben Dagh, a brilliant and 
idiosyncratic installation of book 
sculptures which could be seen at 
the National Museum of Women 
in the Arts in Washington, D.C., 
from April 1 1 to November 6, 
2005. According to Van Nice, the 
installation represents the very 
personal, thoughtfully chosen 
library of Woman Doe, who, al- 
though she no longer lives in Wadi 
ben Dagh, left her collection — the 
map of her mind and soul — to the 
people there. Among her book 
sculptures are Alice's Adventures in 
Wonderland, Joyce's Ulysses, Baude- 
laire's Flowers of Evil, Borges' story 
"Borges and I," and Shakespeare's 
tragedies. The nameless Woman 
Doe has transformed books writ- 
ten mostly by males, many of 
whom, it seems, wrote memorably 
of girls and women. 

Accompanying Van Nice's in- 
stallation was a small pamphlet 
subtitled "An Invitation to Won- 
derland," describing how Van Nice 
created a rabbit hole as the central 
feature of the Alice book sculpture 
by cutting openings in the shape 
of hearts, spades, clubs, and dia- 
monds for visitors to peer into and 
visit Wonderland. At the very bot- 
tom of the hole is a red chess 



38 



piece, representing the Queen of 
Hearts. 

The whole installation had a defi- 
nite Borgesian feel to it, perhaps 
because of its almost totally mono- 
chromatic white purity, or perhaps 
due to its Arabic title, or was it 
Woman Doe's brilliant choice and 
arrangement of books, her mani- 
fest respect for, and yet gentle 
mocking of, minute scholarship? 
As August and I wandered from 
piece to piece, we felt like charac- 
ters in a Borges story, the Aleph 
just out of our grasp. 
And wander we did, though in 
search of Alice not Aleph. Un- 
wisely, we had not arrived until 
November 5th, the eleventh hour. 
Supplies of the exhibit pamphlet 
were totally depleted. And worse. 
We walked around and around the 
small room where the Library was 
installed, inspecting each piece 
with the utmost care, enthralled, 
yet continually searching: Where is 



the Alice? Which could it be? The 
sample exhibit pamphlet clearly 
included a detail ("The Hole of 
Understanding") from the Alice 
sculpture. Shouldn't we of all 
people recognize an Alice when 
we see it? Alas! Finally we asked, 
and to our great disappointment 
were told that an overenthusiastic 
visitor had leaned too far into the 
hole, and broken the piece. What 
became of that visitor we do not 
know. Even more tragic, perhaps, 
was a note announcing that when 
the exhibit closes, the Library, 
"will be dismantled, and [like 



Woman Doe] perhaps never seen 
again." 

' "Lewis Carroll" by Jorge Luis Borges, 
AX 55:4-5; "Borges and Carroll: 
On a Scale of One to One" by the 
present author, KL 71:28; "Lewis 
Carroll and Jorge Luis Borges: Mock 
Epic As Autobiography," in Textual 
Confrontations: Comparative Readings 
in Latin American Literature by Alfred 
MacAdam (University of Chicago, 
1987); etc. 



j^^^n-' « 







Robert Doucette, Frontispiece, 

Why a Raven Is Like a Writing Desk (p. 37) 



39 



BOOKS 

A special collaborative 
Alice issue of Belio, an "ex- 
perimental art-design maga- 
zine" from Spain, contains 
a wealth of stories (English 
translations at the back) 
with pictures, and fabulous 
illustrations from all over 
the globe. 146 color pages; 
$18 in US; €10 in UK. Belio, 
CalleArgente 14,28053 
Madrid, Spain. 
info@beliomagazine.com; 
www.beliomagazine.com. 

A compendium called fotolog. book: 
A Global Snapshot for the Digital Age 
by Nick Currie and Andrew Long 
(Thames & Hudson, 2006) con- 
tains 1,000 of the best images se- 
lected from online photo journals 
in the /oio/og- digital community, 
including six full pages of Alician 
digital images by Helenbar. See 
item in Cyberspace, below. 

The German Alice: An Annotated 
Bibliography (including "nearly 
all" German editions of the Alice 
books, parodies, comics, videos, 
CDs, etc.), compiled by Udo 
Pasterny and Alise G. Wagner, 
privately printed in 100 numbered 
copies, 30 including postage 
for U.S. residents. Udo Pasterny, 
Hohenzollernstr. 15, 44135 Dort- 
mund, Germany; 
udo.pasterny@web.de. 

Tatiana lanovskaia's illustrated The 
Mad Gardener's Song with prefatory 
essays by August A. Imholtz,Jr. and 
Clare Imholtz (Tania Press, 2006). 
US$12. bianovski@sympatico.ca; 
25 Black Hawkway, North York, 
Ontario, Canada, M2R 3L5; (416) 
650-1871. She has some copies of 
her Wonderland still available for 
US$15 as well. Postage to U.S. is 
US$2, elsewhere us $3.50. 

Lisa Randall's Warped Passages, Un- 
raveling the Mysteries of the Universe's 
Hidden Dimensions (Ecco, 2005) 








posits that we live in a "kind 
of Oreo cookie multiverse, 4- 
d(imensional) (mem)branes, 
thinly separated by a 5-d space 
poetically called the bulk." Refer- 
ences to Wonderland abound, 
including the author's belief that 
the title is a pun on "1-d land." 
"When they solved the equations 
for this setup, they discovered 
that the space between the branes 
would be warped." 

Slithy Toves: Illuistrated Classic 
Herpetological Books at the University 
of Kansas in Pictures and Conversa- 
tions by Sally Haines (University of 
Kansas, 2000). Just the title. 

Alice in Corporate Wonderland: 
Down the Long Halhvay by R. T. 
Talasek, Ph.D. (PublishAmerica, 
2005). "Alice is all grown up and 
a freshly minted Ivy League MBA 
thrust into the world of corporate 
America." 

Michael Buckley's The Sisters 
Grimm, Book One: The Fairy-Tale 
Detectives (Abrams, 2005; ages 
9-12; Peter Ferguson, illustrator) 
is a fantasy mystery in which 
our White Rabbit is one of 
the characters. 

Adam Gopnik's convoluted chil- 
dren's novel The King in the Win- 
dow (Miramax/Hyperion, 2005) 
combines science, French history, 
and fantasy. An ancient Alice and 
her pale, wide-eyed lost children 
appear as a plot device. 



Peter Ackroyd's Albion: 
The Origins of the English 
Imagination. (Chatto and 
Windus, 2002) contains 
a handful of references 
to the books. 

Lewis Carroll and the Vic- 
torian Theatre: Theatricals 
in a Quiet Life (Ashgate, 
2005) by Richard Foul- 
kes. To be reviewed in 
our next issue. 

The Kingfisher Book of 
Great Girl Stories, chosen 
by Rosemary Sandberg, 
includes an excerpted "Mad Tea 
Party," from Wonderland (King- 
fisher, 1999). 

Erica Spindler's Killer Takes All 
(Mira Books, 2005) is a mystery/ 
thriller that involves a role-playing 
game called White Rabbit, with peo- 
ple taking on characters from the 
book, and someone whose name 
is Alice. "It looks pretty violent and 
unpleasant." Hardcover, $20. 

Creature Carnival, featuring whim- 
sical illustrations by Gris Grimly 
and associated poems by Marilyn 
Singer (Hyperion, 2004), has a 
Cheshire Cat. 

Film producer (There's Something 
About Mary) and first-time novelist 
Frank Beddor's gritty re-imagining 
called The Looking Glass Wars 
Trilogy [KL 74:42) will be pub- 
lished in the U.S. by the Penguin 
Young Readers Group (ages ten 
and up). The eponymous first 
book is in print; he is currently 
working on the second, to be 
called Seeing Redd. Three of the 
four issues of its adaptation into 
a mini-series graphic novel called 
Hatter M have been published. A 
musical and a card game along the 
lines of Magic: The Gathering are 
said to be in the works. 
www.lookingglasswars.com. 



40 



^ 

ARTICLES 

UoKOJieHue XXI (Generation XXI) 
#2, 2005, a student magazine 
from the Russian Academy of 
Education contains an interview 
with Carroll translator/scholar 
Nina Demurova. 

T: The Sunday New York Times 
Women 's Fashion Magazine, August 
28, 2005, contained "Curiouser 
and Curiouser: Fall Down the 
Rabbit Hole in Prints Fit for a Mad 
Tea Party," a photo spread of 
hatterly outfits. 

The Sea Fairy 41 (Jan/Feb 2006) 
mentions Carroll several times and 
includes a feature called "A Look 
at the Different Alices," discuss- 
ing 14 illustrators from Carroll to 
Mervyn Peake. 

"Hat-itude Adjustment," in AARP: 
The Magazine, March/April 2002, 
discussed actor Andy Garcia's hat 
collection, with an illustration of 
him as, of course, our Hatter. 



CYBERSPACE 



Edward Wakeling has a new Web 
site, which contains two papers, 
"Lewis Carroll as Photographer" 
and "The Real Lewis Carroll"; a 
listing of all known Dodgson pho- 
tographs; and is a place where he 
sells duplicates from his superb 
collection, www.lewiscarroll-site. 
com. 

The superb digital images of 
Wonderland by Helena De Barros 
("Helenbar"), one of which was 
featured on the cover of KL 73 
(article: KI. 73:39) can be seen as a 
slide show by going to www.helen- 
bar.com/art/wond_01.htm and 
clicking the forward arrows (»). 

"Alice no Pais das Maravilhas," an 
abbreviated version used to teach 
Portuguese on the Isle of Jersey 
(U.K.) at www.projectodejersey. 
com/Alicenopaisdasmaravilhasl. 
htm. 

An amazing array of /I //f^ images 
at www.eatpoo.com/phpBB2/view- 
topic.php?t=39960. 



Adam Cline's Adventures ofAmish 
Alice onWnc comic book at adam- 
cline.com/theadventuresof 
amishalice/adventuresofamish 
alice.htm. 

Peggy Guest's marvelous take on 
the Snark at www.peggyguest.com/ 
illustration.html. 

"Alice in Underland" is the title of: 
a series of sketches by Raymond 
Korshi at www.lairofthetwisted 
kitten.co.uk/gallery/alicel.htm; 
Rigoberto Rodriguez's series of 
erotic photographs at www.enter- 
art.com/rigoberto/english/works. 
htm; a poem by Lisa Shao at lisa. 
shao.org/archives/poetry/alice_ 
in_underland.html; Wolfgang 
Zuckermann's book (Olive Press, 
2000), described as "a curious mix- 
ture of nonsense, social satire and 
surrealist fairytale, which takes the 
classical Alice through the dreary 
landscape of suburban America"; 
a performance piece from Norway 
(www.katma.net/performances/ 
aliceinunderland.php); an online 
comic by The Brothers Grinn 
(Brian and Stuart Burke) at www. 
supermegatopia.com/comics/ 
alice.php; etc. 



M 

CONFERENCES AND LECTURES 

Children's author John Scieszka 
( The Stinky Cheese Man, etc.) deliv- 
ered the annual Zena Sutherland 
Lecture at the University of Chi- 
cago on May 6, 2005, which ended 
with his accolade to Carroll and 
a "tribute" poem called "Gobble- 
gooky." The talk was adapted into 
an article published in The Horn 
Book Magazine (November/Decem- 
ber 2005). 

In a special session on the history 
of mathematics at the American 
Mathematical Society's eastern 
regional meeting on October 8, 
2005, at Bard College in Annan- 
dale-on-Hudson, New York, Dr. 
Francine F. Abeles gave a paper 
entitled "Lewis Carroll's Diagram- 
matic Logic System for Syllogisms." 



m 

EXHIBITIONS 

The 2005 "Hand Bookbinders 
of California Annual Members' 
Exhibition," at the Universit)' of 
California at San Francisco's Kal- 
manovitz Library (September-De- 
cember '05), featured Eleanor 
Ramsey's stunning binding of the 
Brabant/Walker Cheshire Cat 
Press Wonderland. Her companion 
Looking-Glass will be on loan to 
the "100th Anniversary Exhibi- 
tion of The Guild of Book Work- 
ers" from October 2006 through 
September 2007. Venues include 
the Grolier Club in New York City, 
Newberry Library in Chicago, 
University of Utah in Salt Lake 
City, Portland State University, 
Bridwell Library in Dallas, and the 
Boston Athenaeum. Further de- 
tails will be posted to palimpsest. 
stanford.edu/byorg/gbw/exhibit/ 
2006exhibit.shtml. 

The Spencer, a small, newly reno- 
vated boutique hotel located on 
the grounds of the illustrious 
Chautauqua Institution, a not-for- 
profit, 750-acre educational center 
located on Chautauqua Lake in 
southwestern New York State, is 
celebrating its centennial in 2006. 
The Spencer operates as a small, 
independent hotel property with 
a distinctive literary theme that 
celebrates the life and works of 
history's most revered authors; 
naturally, it has a Lewis Carroll 
room, www.thespencer.com; 
800.398-1306. 

% 

AUCTIONS 

One of John Lennon's school 
notebooks sold for 126,500 
pounds ($226,000) on April 19 
by rock-memorabilia auctioneer 
Cooper Owen in Egham, Surrey, 
England. Lennon was only 12 
when he made the 10-page book 
of drawings in pen, pencil and 
watercolors alongside handwritten 
verses from classic English poems 
in 1952. The collection, called "My 
Anthology," included an illustrated 



41 



"The Walrus and the Carpenter." 
www.cooperowen.com/news_len 
non.asp. 



MEDIA 

Marilyn Manson seems to be going 
ahead with his Phantasmagoria 
movie project {KL 75:30) and has 
cast porcelain-faced, red-haired 
British fashion model Lily Cole, 
18, as Alice. Keep up with the 
madness at www.mansonusa.com. 

"The Compulsive Line: Etching 
1900 to Now" at the Museum of 
Modern Art in New York City in 
April, included "Pool of Tears 
2 (After Lewis Carroll)" by Kiki 
Smith, an etching with watercolor 
additions based on a sketch from 
Under Ground, and a portfolio of 
Surrealist etchings from the game 
"Exquisite Corpse," wherein an 
elongated, nude Alice appears. 

Mononymous pop star Jewel's latest 
CD is titled Goodbye Alice in Won- 
derland. 



PERFORMANCES 



Playwright, Pulitzer-nominated 
journalist, novelist ( Wildcatting) 
and very successful radio talk 
show host Shann Nix's play Alice 
Underground opened at the 



Sonoma (CA) Community Center 
in April. With an original score 
byjef Labes (Van Morrison's 
pianist), the "dark musical about 
the 82-year-old Alice approaching 
the end of her life" blends her 
nursing-home existence with hal- 
lucinations-come-to-life from her 
fictional adventures. 



-M- 



THINGS 

Frank Brunner's erotic art port- 
folios of Wonderland (1977) and 
Looking-Glass (1979) have been 
long-sought collectors' items. 
They — along with some other Alice 
pieces, comic book stories, and 
other fantasy illustrations — have 
now been reprinted in magazine 
format as Brunner's Carnal Delights 
($10) by Carnal Comics, PO. 
Box 2068, Scottsdale, AZ 85282; 
https://demicomix.com/oscom- 
merce/. Be sure to get the "Alice" 
and not the "regular" cover. 

Nana Banana's "Classic Coloring 
Books" includes an abridged Won- 
derland illustrated by Edel Rodri- 
guez. www.nanabanana.com. $16. 

Pierre Silber, purveyor of erotic 
wear, has some items of interest: 
"Alice's Wonderful Apron Dress," 
"Alice's Dress," "Tea Party Cos- 
tume" (the Hatter!?), "Sexy Fairy- 



HERE, HOUB TMB MAT W«)16T X 
!C)?AWPAD6 MlOm'OH MY Bi^^^^^- 
L£ASTM^£ you AIN'T A SkWi- 
WOCICER HKE THAT^ed^S/r— 
'UB MU6T OF VVA6 BO^HBP OM 
,1^B TOPFLOOe OF kPMOHO" 




tail Dress," and "Alice's Queen." 
All for around $40-$60. Be fore- 
warned. www.pierresilber.com. 

Disney Rarities: Celebrated Shorts 
1920S-1960& collects the "Alice" 
shorts of the 1920s onto DVD. Fea- 
turettes include an interview with 
Virginia Davis, who played Alice. 

Collectors of hentai (Japanese 
erotic manga [comic books] ) 
should note two series from Eros 
Comics: Mashumarojyuubaori's 
Alice in Sexland a.nd Alice Extreme. 
Of the first series, #s 2 and 5-8 
are available, of the second, the 
full set of seven at $3.50-$4 each. 
www.eroscomix.com; 7563 Lake 
City Way NE, Seattle, WA 981 15; 
800.657-1 100. You can find scans 
of the complete books in many 
places on the Web. Not for the 
faint of heart. 

Rob Espinosa 's New Alice in Wonder- 
land comic book mini-series from 
Antarctic Press has released Issues 
#1, 2, and 3. $4.50 each. www. 
antarctic-press.com/html/version_ 
01 /store. php?id=Alice. 

Whittard of Chelsea has many tea- 
related Alice items. See www. whit- 
tard. co.uk: check out "Alice" under 
"Easter," or use the search box. 

Just released: a DVD of the Sev- 
enth World Symposium on Choral 
Music in Kyoto, Japan, with the 
first three movements of Eight 
Scenes from Alice by Patrick van 
Deurzen; www.brain-music.com/ 
asia/205dvd/ 05choral_dvd.html. 

Pop-up cards from Sabuda's Alice 
are now available from robert- 
sabuda.com. 

The Breaches, Westerham, Kent, 
an "enchanting period house," 
went on sale in October for 
£1,100,000. Alice Hargreaves win- 
tered there in later life, and this is 
where she died, on a cold Novem- 
ber day in 1934. 






42 





( '«:'tlr u . i i ■'•Till ■" ^wlrir 





T/jf- Breaches, Westerham, Kent